On Saturday night I was invited to a private wine tasting in Las Cañitas by Daniel Karlin, founder and owner of Anuva Wines. Anuva is a wine distribution company which sends high quality boutique Argentine wines to 32 states in the U.S. and also hosts small wine tastings here in Buenos Aires. My goal was to experience the wine tasting and write a review for Argentina's Travel Guide. Like I always manage to do, I showed up too early, so I took a quick stroll around the block and saw how lovely and quiet the area was. This was definitely the right atmosphere for a refined wine tasting.
We went upstairs with the couple from Dallas who was there for the wine tasting, and began with the presentation. Already on the table were the five glasses waiting to be filled and a plate delicately prepared with the pairings of food. I've been to wine tastings before in Sicily and in Mendoza, but this was different. Rather than being rushed through a distillery with a guide who doesn't fully reach fluent status, we were in Karlin's home, and we were quickly made to feel like old pals. Karlin is actually an American expat, so aside from his perfect English, he had a different perspective to give us for restaurants, politics, and culture. This isn't a lesson that should be taken for granted, and to be honest I think it's one of the best and most distinguishing qualities of this experience.
We tried our five wines and ate our five foods. My favorite was definitely the San Gimignano Malbec Roble, which to me just had this buttery taste that made me feel warm and content. I easily could have had an entire bottle of it, and with any luck one day soon I'll get a bottle for myself. Of course, the other bottles were also excellent, with two whites and two additional reds.
My only regret is that I wasn't aware of this wine tasting when I first arrived to Argentina. It really was helpful and insightful for those who aren't wine experts, let alone those who've got extensive knowledge of boutique wineries in Argentina. Even after living here eight months and learning so much about the wine here, I didn't feel like anything discussed was old news. The history of the labels, the production, and the explanation of why this country produces such excellent wine went with the tasting just as much as the delicious food did.
Now, while the tasting costs U$40, I won't say it's overpriced. Let me explain. To me, U$40 is a hefty price for most things, but that's because I live here making an Argentine salary and getting charged for things in US Dollars. I live as cheaply as possible. But if you're traveling through the country and really want to try good wine but don't know where to start, I wholeheartedly recommend this activity. Do the right thing and don't just settle on the most expensive bottle at the restaurant. For 40 bucks you get a hell of a value, not to mention personalized service and recommendations for later on as well.
Don't just take my word for it though. Anuva's reviews on TripAdvisor speak for themselves. Check out this wine tasting in Buenos Aires and let me know what your thoughts are.