Argentine Wines Past, Present, and Future:
The Argovino Year in Review

The end of the year is almost here, and it’s a perfect time to reflect on what we’ve tasted in Argovino’s first seven-and-a-bit months. We’d also like to tell you a little about how Argovino has evolved during that time.

We now have more than 350 wines reviewed on the site, and so we can look at a few statistics. This is the distribution of the vintages we’ve tasted:

And this is the distribution of their scores:

On average, the vintages 2008, 2009 and 2010 scored just under 87 points. The 2011 and 2012 vintages have both averaged over 87 points so far, though this difference is not significant. We give scores of 85 and up to any bottle that’s enjoyable and worth drinking, so the takeaway is that Argentina is a mature wine-producing country, offering quality with every vintage. The 2013 harvest is supposed to have been excellent, so there’s much to look forward to from all three recent vintages. In fact, we’ve just received our first 2013 bottle, a torrontes under the Urban Uco label by O. Fournier.

The vast majority of the wines we tasted – about 84% – came from the province of Mendoza. The rest were split between Salta (25), Neuquen (13), San Juan (10), La Rioja (5), Rio Negro (2), and mixes (3). In terms of total area planted, Mendoza was overrepresented; it only had about 71 percent of Argentina’s total territory under vines as of 2012. San Juan, which had about 21%, was underrepresented. Of course, there are differences in the likelihood of wines being exported from each province – Mendoza is further along in terms of global commerce – but we’ll try to correct the balance in the coming year.

At the moment, we’re reviewing up to a dozen wines a week, which we preserve for second tastings using Vineyard Fresh argon spray and, when necessary, new corks. Argovino.com is receiving several thousand page views per month, and the attention we’ve managed to attract has allowed us to receive samples from some of Argentina’s leading wineries. These samples help us to bring you more information about wines on the American market. But we’ll always apply the same standard to all wines, regardless of provenance, in our New York tastings. As we’ve said before, the only way to earn our readers’ trust is to provide accessible reviews based on consistent criteria. We hope we’ve done that so far, and we welcome your feedback. Salud!

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