Grape Varieties

Grape-variety

Vitis vinifera was first brought to Argentina by Spanish settlers in the 16th century. Soon afterwards, the Cuyo region proved to have excellent ecological characteristics for wine grapes, thus becoming, together with La Rioja, the main production areas in our country.

An important change took place in 1852, when Domingo Faustino Sarmiento fostered the introduction of European grape varieties, a task carried out mainly by the French agronomist Michel Pouget, who was serving in the government of Mendoza at the time. Fine grapes like the red Malbec, Pinot Noir, Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon arrived in this province along with white varieties such as Chenin, Chardonnay, Riesling, Sauvignon Blanc and Semillón.

Other vine varieties introduced later by individual immigrants during the great immigration wave -namely Tempranillo, Ugni Blanc, Barbera, Lambrusco (Sangiovese), Bonarda (Corbeau) and Pedro Giménez (of unknown origin)- became widespread in a few years. Although European vineyards remained notably pure in the early stages, there was some confusion as to their names until 1958, when the National Institute of Agricultural Technology (INTA) published a description of the main cultivars in use. The initial ampelographic disarray gradually disappeared with the evolution of different aspects of vineyard management and the correction of the denominations.

Nowadays, continuous success in international contests and the growing importance of Argentina in foreign markets is evidence of the potential of our terroirs to produce fine classical grape varieties.

Search by Grape-variety

Barbera

Wines with this grape variety

Originally from the Italian Piedmont region, in our country Barbera is cultivated near San Rafael, a Southern Mendoza region that produces very good wines. Barbera wines have good color and body but are not very elegant; which accounts for its widespread…

Bonarda

Wines with this grape variety

It is planted in large areas and increasingly used for high-quality wines. According to researchers, it is not the same variety as the Italian Bonardas. On the other hand, P. Truel has identified it as the Corbeau variety, an officially accepted name.…

Cabernet Franc

Wines with this grape variety

This is a more rustic variety than Cabernet Sauvignon, but it is very useful in blends, to grant intensity and color to the other varieties in the blend. It has pepper, raspberry and violet aromas. Information provided by agronomists Alberto Alcalde…

Cabernet Sauvignon

Wines with this grape variety

Cabernet Sauvignon is a widespread variety at the world level. Originally from Burdeaux, France, it is one of the most plastic varieties, along with Chardonnay, as it maintains a certain tipicity wherever it is grown and it adapts well to different climates…

Chardonnay

Wines with this grape variety

Considered the top variety among fine white grapes, Chardonnay is used to produce the highest-quality white varietals, blends for white generic wines and for the most important local sparkling wines. It makes rich, balanced wines, with good aroma and…

Gewürztraminer

Wines with this grape variety

It is a rosé-colored and citric-flavored grape variety, flaunting a great aromatic characteristic. It is native to Central Europe and it is used to make certain high-quality white wines. It is better developed under cool rather than warm climate conditions,…

Malbec

Wines with this grape variety

The most emblematic Argentinian wine is made of this variety. Known as Cot in most viticultural countries, its most common name in Argentina is Malbec or “French grape.” According to several authors, it is originally from Quercey and Cahors, in France.…

Merlot

Wines with this grape variety

Merlot is the main variety used to make the blend wines from the famous French appellations, Saint Émilion and Pomerol. Italy is the country with the world’s most extensive area of vineyards, and Eastern Europe has a considerable large area planted…

Moscatel de Alejandría

Wines with this grape variety

This white grape variety belongs to the Muscat family of Vitis vinifera. It is considered an “old vine” and wine experts think that it is one of the oldest existing varieties with no genetically modification. The grape was born in the North of Africa…

Pedro Giménez

Wines with this grape variety

The grape variety grown in Argentina under this denomination is not the same as the one produced in other countries. It is hardly ever used alone, although some winemakers might boast of producing an excellent varietal with it. In Argentina it is mostly…

Petit Verdot

Wines with this grape variety

It is a black grape variety used to make red wines, mainly for blending with Cabernet Sauvignon. The fact that it ripens later than most of the other varieties does not allow it to be successful in many French regions, being only found in Bordeaux. It…

Pinot gris

Wines with this grape variety

This is a white grape variety of the Vitis vinífera species and it is thought to be a mutant clone of the Pinot noir grape. Wines made from this grape exhibit a color ranging from deep golden yellow to coppery including a pink hue. The clone of Pinot…

Pinot Noir

Wines with this grape variety

This is the variety used to make the best Burgundy wines. In France, it is also grown in Alsace, the Central Loire Valley and the Champagne region (since the white wine from this red variety is part of the cuve of the best French Champagne wines). The…

Riesling

Wines with this grape variety

This variety originates in Germany and in the Alsace region in France. Riesling wines have an unmistakable aroma and often show a natural sweetness that makes them very elegant wines. This variety is not very much cultivated in Argentina, since its yield…

Sangiovese

Wines with this grape variety

A typically Italian wine grape used to produce the famous Chianti. In Argentina, Sangiovese has been cultivated for decades, but it is another example of wine varieties whose potential for making top wines has only been discovered a few years ago. When…

Sauvignon Blanc

Wines with this grape variety

This is the finest variety after Chardonnay. Preferably, it is harvested before it reaches full ripeness to preserve its acidity, which imparts particular dryness to the wine. This originally French variety is cultivated in the Loire, in Bordeaux and…

Semillón

Wines with this grape variety

For a long time, Semillón was looked down on in our country because the denomination was used for low-quality wines. Undoubtedly, those wines were made with a different variety or with very poor processing. Nowadays, it is identified with very good…

Syrah

Wines with this grape variety

Its origin is still uncertain. In France it is the base for the Cáte du Rhíne wines and is also part of the blend for the famous Cháteauneuf-du-Pape. It is possibly the most renowned French wine grape after the Bordeaux and Burgundy varieties. In…

Tannat

Wines with this grape variety

This variety is native to the south-west of France, used for making red, rosé and white wines. Nowadays, its main growing areas are found in France, Medanos, Bolivia, Brazil and Uruguay. Wines made from Tannat grapes, offer a great intensity, flaunting…

Tempranillo

Wines with this grape variety

Quite a popular variety in the Cuyo region, it is now being rediscovered by winemakers and required by wineries due to the successful exports of the wines produced with it. Although there is no certainty about its introduction in our country, the Argentinian…

Torrontés

Wines with this grape variety

Being the only wine variety considered 100% Argentine, Torrontés is cultivated in all the wine regions of the country, from Salta to Rio Negro. Argentina is practically the only country that produces it, and so the name Torrontés is readily associated…

Traminer

Wines with this grape variety

The production of this variety from Alsace is quite small in Argentina. It is generally cultivated in very high and cold areas, where just a few, but well processed dry or sweet wines are obtained. When it is made providing all the necessary care and…

Ugni Blanc

Wines with this grape variety

Used in numerous white blends, it is part of the coupage for the cuv?e of several sparkling wines to raise their level of acidity naturally. It produces lively but not very aromatic wines. In Italy, it is known as Trebiano and in France as Saint Emilion…

Viognier

Wines with this grape variety

Originally from Bosnia, Viognier has been grown in the Rhone Valley, France, for ages to make Condrieu wines. Planting of Viognier in our country began in 1993. The Argentinian wine industry started to experiment with this grape variety only a few years…