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Flashcards in C37 - Argentina Deck (106):
1

Describe the general locations of most of Argentina's vineyards

They lie close to the Andes in a series of irrigated oases in what is otherwise desert

2

Over what range are the vineyards of Argentina spread?

More than 1500km

3

Between where and where are the vineyards of Argentina spread?

From Salta in the north to Río Negro and Neuquén in the Patagonia

4

Describe altitude in Argentina's vineyards
What are the notable exceptions?

Most vineyards lie 600m or above sea level
With the exception of Río Negro and Neuquén

5

Where is Salta?

Close to the town of Cafayate in the far north of Argentina

6

Where are the highest vineyards in Argentina? How high are they?

Salta
They regularly extend to 2000m or more

7

What is it about Argentina's high vineyards that makes the country unique?

It allows for suitably cool sites to be found close to the equator

8

How were Argentinian vineyards historically planted? Why?

In the Pergola system
Due to the heat

9

What is the pergola system known as in Argentina?

Parral

10

Why was the pergola system needed in the heat of Argentina?

Lifted grapes away from searing heat close to the ground
Provided shade for the grapes as they hung beneath the leaf canopy

11

For which grape in Argentina is parral still commonly used?

Torrontés

12

How are many black grapes NOW grown in Argentina?

Using vertical trellises (though the canopies still need to shade the fruit from the intense fruit)

13

What is rainfall like in Argentina?

Extremely low (in the rain shadow of the Andes)

14

How is drought commonly treated in the vineyards of Argentina?

Traditionally, flood irrigation was widespread, but drip irrigation is more common in newer vineyards now

15

Where does water for irrigation come from in Argentina?

Rivers flowing down from mountains
Subterranean aquifers

16

Describe and explain irrigation in Argentina

Flood irrigation was widespread, but drip irrigation is more common in newer vineyards as it uses scarce water more efficiently

17

Besides drought, which other seasonal problems are a threat in Argentina?

Spring Frosts
Summer hail

18

Of seasonal problems in Argentina, which is the biggest threat/problem?

Summer hail

19

Where in Argentina is summer hail the biggest problem?

Mendoza

20

How do most producers in Mendoza deal with the threat of summer hail? What is the disadvantage of this?

They use netting to protect their vines
The expense

21

What is the traditional method of risk management for grape-growers in Argentina? Why will this remain in practice?

To own vineyards in several different areas
It brings considerable advantages at the blending stage

22

To which viticultural problems is Argentina generally not susceptible? Why?

Rot or mildew
The dry climate

23

What is Argentina's role in ethical winemaking?

It's an important producer of organically grown grapes

24

What is the flagship grape variety of Argentina?

Malbec

25

How significant is Malbec in Argentina?

It has the largest plantings of the grape worldwide

26

Describe the overall style of Malbec in Argentina

Full-bodied
Deeply coloured
Black fruit
High levels of smooth tannins

27

What is the new style of Malbec in Argentina? How is it produced?

More elegant
Using gentler methods of extraction

28

What is the role of oak in Argentinian Malbec?

It is used for most high-quality Malbecs in Argentina

29

What is the effect of oak in Argentina's premium Malbecs?

It lends subtle, spicy flavours

30

Where is Malbec grown in Argentina? What is the result on the flavour?

It has been grown in every wine-producing area of Argentina
Regional differences can be noticed in the wines

31

Describe the differences which can be noticed in Malbec based on where it's grown in Argentina

When made at lower altitude, they're fuller bodied with richer black fruit
When made at higher altitude, they tend to be more elegant, displaying fresher more floral aromas

32

How may Malbec be used in blended wines?

It can play a leading role in some premium blends

33

With which varieties is Malbec most commonly blended?

Cabernet Sauvignon
Merlot
Cabernet Franc and/or Petit Verdot

34

What is the second most planted variety in Argentina?

Bonarda

35

Describe Bonarda's general characteristics

Late ripening
Deeply coloured
High acidity
High tannins

36

Describe the two major styles of Bonarda in Argentina

At high yields: Easy drinking wines, medium to deep colour and fruity raspberry and blackberry aromas
Controlled yields and proper ripening: Greater concentration and structure

37

Where is Bonarda mainly grown?

Argentina, in Mendoza and San Juan

38

Besides Malbec and Bonarda, which other black varieties are widely planted?

Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah and Merlot
Smaller volumes of Tempranillo and Pinot Noir

39

What traits do premium reds of Argentina tend to share in common?

Concentrated ripe fruit flavours, usually with toasty notes from oak

40

What is often seen as Argentina's signature white variety?

Torrontés

41

Where is Torrontés widely planted?

In Argentina, in Salta, La Rioja, San Juan and Mendoza

42

Where do many of the best examples of Torrontés come from in Argentina?

High-altitude vineyards in the Cafayate region of Salta Province

43

Describe the profile of Torrontés in Argentina?

Medium body
Medium acidity
Intense, fruity, floral perfume
Flavours of stone fruits and melon

44

How is Torrontés vinified? Why?

Vines are usually fermented in inert, temperature-controlled vessels and released from the winery in the year of harvest
To realise its full potential as an aromatic grape variety

45

Besides Torrontés, which other grape variety is widely planted?

Chardonnay

46

What style is Chardonnay made into in Argentina?

A range of styles
Premium wines are matured in oak, a portion of which is often new

47

Besides Torrontés and Chardonnay, which other white varieties are also grown in Argentina?

Chenin Blanc, Sauvignon Blanc, Semillon and Viognier

48

What is the white variety with the greatest plantings

Pedro Gimenez

49

Describe wines made from Pedro Gimenez in Argentina

Traditional and low-quality
Used in cheap wines for the domestic market
Now in decline

50

Describe wines made from Pedro Gimenez in Argentina

Traditional and low-quality
Used in cheap wines for the domestic market
Now in decline

51

Which is the only of Argentina's three broad wine regions which is widely seen on labels?

Patagonia

52

What are the smaller subdivisions of Argentina, in decreasing size order?

Provinces
Departments

53

Where is Salta Province?

Close to the border of Bolivia
Most northerly of vineyard areas in Argentina

54

What is the most notable feature of vineyards in Salta province?

It's home to some of the highest vineyards in the world
Some are over 3000m asl

55

What is the result of Salta's extreme climate on wines?

Produces wines of great purity and concentration

56

What is the dominant grape of Salta Province in Argentina?

Torrontés

57

What is Torrontés wine like in Salta Province?

Highly aromatic

58

Where are Torrontés wines especially aromatic in Salta Province?

Cafayate region

59

Explain the business of wine in Cafayate

There has been investment in the region from many of the large wineries based in Mendoza and some major European wine companies for its superior quality of Torrontés

60

What are the dominant black varieties planted in Cafayate?

Malbec and Cabernet Sauvignon

61

What is the key statistic related to La Rioja and its role in Argentinian winemaking?

It has the third largest area of production in Argentina

62

What is the name of the main vineyard area in La Rioja?

Famatina Valley

63

Describe Famatina Valley

Large volumes of grapes can be grown here on the irrigated valley floors

64

What is a speciality of the Famatina Valley?

Torrontés

65

What are the most planted black varieties of Famatina Valley, La Rioja?

Cabernet Sauvignon
Syrah
Bonarda

66

How are the exported wines of Famatina generally labelled? Why?

Famatina
To avoid confusion with Rioja in Spain, 'La Rioja' is avoided on the label

67

What is Argentina's second most important wine region?

San Juan

68

Describe the vineyards of San Juan Province

They are located at approximately 450 to 1400 metres above sea level (similar altitude range to Mendoza)

69

What is the province of San Juan particularly noted for?

The quality of its Syrah

70

Other than Syrah, which other grapes flourish in San Juan?

Red: Malbec, Cabernet Sauvignon and Bonarda
White: Chardonnay and Viognier

71

Which province dominates winemaking in Argentina?

Mendoza

72

Describe the vineyards of Mendoza

They are planted in desert conditions
Protected from rain by Andes to the west and the Argentine Pampas to the east

73

How can Mendoza be further sub-divided?

Into five divisions:
Northern
Eastern
Central
Uco Valley
Southern

74

How are the wines from Mendoza's different divisions generally used?

They are often blended to take advantage of fruit from different climates

75

Where in Mendoza is the focus on high-volume, inexpensive wine?

Northern and Eastern Mendoza

76

Why are Northern and Eastern Mendoza suited to high-volume, inexpensive wines?

The Mendoza River flows through these areas, providing irrigation water, making growing large quantities of grapes possible

77

Which area of Mendoza has the longest history of creating high quality wines?

Central Mendoza

78

Where are many of the most famous producers based in Argentina?

Central Mendoza

79

Which department in particular in Central Mendoza has a high reputation? What for?

Luján de Cuyo
Very fine Malbec

80

Describe the positioning of Luján de Cuyo

At around 900 to 1100 metres in altitude
Foothills of the Andes
South-west of Mendoza City

81

Besides altitude, what else particularly contributes to the very fine quality of Malbec in Luján de Cuyo?

Very old vines

82

What do the old vines and grapes of Luján de Cuyo contribute to blends?

Much of the soft, round and sweet spice

83

Which department lies to the east of Luján de Cuyo?

The Maipú department

84

Describe how the vineyards of Maipú differ from those of Luján de Cuyo

They are at lower altitudes

85

Which grapes perform particularly well in Maipú?

Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah

86

Describe what's produced in the eastern, lower part of Maipú?

Much of the area's high volume, inexpensive wine for domestic and export markets

87

Besides high-volume, inexpensive wine, what else does the lower, eastern part of Maipú create?

It's a valuable source of old-vine Bonarda and Tempranillo

88

Which region lies to the south-west of Mendoza?

The Uco Valley

89

What is the Uco Valley a good source of?

High quality fruit

90

Describe the vineyards of Uco Valley

They lie at 900 to 1500 metres

91

Where are the highest vineyards in Mendoza?

Uco Valley

92

What is the effect of climate on the grapes of Uco Valley?

Cool nights help to retain fresh fruit flavours and acidity
The wines sometimes also display floral notes as a result

93

Which grapes flourish in Uco Valley?

Red: Malbec, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Tempranillo
White: Torrontés, Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc

94

Which 'other' grape can flourish in Uco Valley? Why?

Pinot Noir
Some sites are cool enough

95

Where is Tupungato? Describe it. What is it known for?

Uco Valley
A high altitude area to the west of the region
The quality of its wines

96

What is notable about Southern Mendoza?

It's home to the San Rafael department

97

Describe the San Rafael department of Southern Mendoza

Compared with much of Mendoza it has a low altitude
Southerly location makes it one of the coolest areas in Mendoza

98

What is the reputation of San Rafael department in Southern Mendoza?

It has the country's most significant plantings of Chenin Blanc

99

What is the most southerly region of Argentina? What is the result?

Patagonia Region
It's Argentina's coolest region due to latitude

100

Which notable provinces are found in Patagonia?

Río Negro Province
Neuquén Province

101

What is the role of altitude in Patagonia Region?

Vineyards here are relatively low, at 200 to 250 metres

102

What is the notable challenge for grape-growers in Patagonia?

Strong desert winds

103

Why do vines benefit from a low incidence of disease in Patagonia?

Low rainfall
Wide diurnal range

104

What are the growing conditions like in Patagonia and what effect does this have on wines?

Long daylight hours and cool nights
Provides wines with concentrated, but fresh fruit flavours and medium to high acidity

105

Which grapes are capable of making premium wines in Río Negro?

Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Noir, Malbec and Merlot

106

What kind of wine is Neuquén best for?

Its full potential is still being explored