Wines have been produced in South America since the year 1500. Initially, South American wineries were not producing as great wines as they are now. Currently, the wine industry in South America is booming, with Argentina and Chile among the top ten spots.
Each wine producing region in South America has its own characteristics. These make each of them unique. Together, they contribute to producing some of the best wines in the world.
The geographical settings of different locations makes them unique and different from one another. Some of the factors are temperature, terrain, and grape varieties.
Apart from Argentina and Chile, lesser known regions like Brazil, Uruguay, and Peru are also becoming popular wine regions. The most noted wine variety from Argentina is the Malbec. In Chile, the most popular is the Carménère. Other wines produced here include Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, Merlot, and Sauvignon Blanc.
Let’s take a look at some of the major wine regions in South America, and what makes each so irresistible.
This is the oldest wine producing region in Chile. Some of the most famous South American wines are produced here. Wines have been produced here since 1555. This region produces both red and white wines. Some the most famous wineries here are Santa Rita, Concha Y Toro, Carmen, Tarapacá, and Cousiño Macul.
Some of the red wines produced from this region are Merlot, Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Cabernet Franc. White wines are Chardonnay, Semillon, and Sauvignon Blanc.
This is located 60 miles off Santiago. The area is blessed with rich fertile soil, which produces some fine grape varieties. It has the perfect atmosphere for tourists, and great wineries. The Andes in the background offer visitors the perfect view.
Famous wineries here are Casa Lapostolle, Porta, Gracia, San Isidro, and Anakena among many others. Both red and white wines are produced here. Some red wine varieties are Merlot, Syrah, Malbec, and Sauvignon. White wine varieties produced here are Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay.
Mendoza is inseparable from wine production. Two thirds of the Argentina’s wine production comes from here. The two major wine producing regions in Mendoza are Luján and Maipú. They are home to a total of 700 wineries. Catena Zapata is a must visit winery. Alta Vista and Zuccardi are two of the other most famous wineries in the area.
Wine tours are arranged for tourists and local visitors. Some red wines produced here are Cabernet Sauvignon, Malbec, and Tempranillo. White wine varieties are Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, and Torrontés.
Valle de Uco
Also known as Valley Uco, this region is situated on the southwest of Mendoza. Although it is part of Mendoza, but still has some very unique features. Highly fertile soil, high altitudes, and a lengthy growing season are perfect to grow high quality wine grapes. These unique characters make this place a wine heaven.
Two major grape varieties produced here are Malbec and Semillon. Some of the finest red and white wines are produced here, with a characteristic floral aroma.
The region has got some technologically advanced winemaking facilities. Uco Valley has a booming wine tourism industry, and various wine tours and wine tasting activities available. Clos de los Siete and Gimenez Riili are a must visit in Valle de Uco.
Cafayate is a town located in Salta, Argentina. Wines are produced in the area called Valles Calchaquies. Due to its low humidity and less rainfall, the region offers a great environment for grape production.
There are three major wineries in Cafayate. They are Bodega Nanni, Bodega Domingo Hermanos, and Bodega El Esteco.
All the wineries here offer amazing wine tours and wine tasting sessions. There is a vast increase in wine tourism in this area as it offers some great wines along with peace and tranquility.
Argentina’s finest wines like Malbec, Tannat, and Cabernet Sauvignon are produced here.
Uruguay is one of the more up-and-coming wine producing regions in South America. Some of the must visit wineries in Uruguay are Bodega Bouza, Bodegas Carrau, and Alto de La Ballena. All the wineries here arrange for wine tours for visitors.
Bodegas Carrau is one of the oldest wineries, and dates back to 1930. The family’s winemaking business dates back as far as 1752.
Bodega Bouza is famous for its classic car collections, dating back to 1920’s.
Both red and white wines are produced in this region. Some of the red wines are Pinot Noir, Marselan, and Cabernet Sauvignon out of many others. White wine varieties are Sauvignon Gris, Chardonnay, and Sauvignon Blanc among others.
Brazil is the fifth largest wine producer in the Southern Hemisphere. Some of the most famous wineries in Brazil are Gaúcha and Vale dos Vinhedos.
High amounts of rainfall and fertile soils result in a booming grape production here. Another region near Santa Catarina is Catarinense, which produces Pinot Noir and Sauvignon Blanc.
Brazil is home to more than 1100 wineries. One of the most preferred wine tasting tours is the Vale dos Vinhedos Wine Tasting Tour. It includes some of the most amazing natural settings along with amazing wines.
Some of the most famous wines produced in Brazil are Cave Geisse, Don Giovanni, Casa Valduga, and Miolo.
Peru is renowned for producing a distilled spirit known as pisco. Ica is one of the major places in Peru which produce pisco. It a great spot for tourists offering various wine and pisco tours.
Some of the most famous wineries here are Vista Alegre and El Catador. El Catador is famous for producing pisco, which is also the national drink of Peru. Some of the grapes used in pisco production are Mollar, Moscatel, Univa, along with many others.
Some fine wines are also produced in Ica but due to hotter climate wine production is limited.
The most famous wine tour in Ica is arranged by Huacachina Hostel offers great activities along with wine and pisco tasting.
All the wine destinations in South America have something unique to offer. Due to their geographical settings, they produce some of the greatest wines in the world. The temperatures and top quality grapes are what makes these wines so irresistible and a must try.