What wine, Malbecs to try in Argentina
Argentina’s wine industry is internationally renowned for its Malbec. This wine can vary in flavor, but is recognizable for its robust aroma paired with its thick tannins and traces of oak. Malbec is best when served with red meat, the perfect companion to a tradition dinner of Argentine steak. Finding the brand that best suits your tastes should prove to be a merry search. Try Catena Zapata, Norton DOC, Achaval Ferrer or Luigi Bosca to get you started. You can always speed it up with a wine tasting.
*There is a new vine that is gaining popularity and quality called Bonarda. A good starting point is Fond de Cave reserve by Trapiche.
Some other alcoholic beverages in Argentina that are popular include:
-The legal drinking age is 18 in Argentina. Have fun you study abroaders!
The famous Fernet and Coke: Fernet is an herbal liquor that packs a punch (40%). It has a distinct taste that is described as earthy (LandingPadBA staff recommends Fernet Branca with Coke or Fernet Menta with Coke or Sprite)
Gancia and Sprite: In its pure form, Gancia is a bit more alcoholic than wine and has a lemon based flavor. It is an aperetivo and is typically mixed with Sprite or 7Up and a slide of lemon.
Champagne and Lemon Sorbet: Many Argentines enjoy this delicious treat during Christmas and New Year’s Eve as a dessert.
Cinzano and Soda: A sweet vermouth mixed with soda water and at times with a splash of Fernet.
Limoncello: A digestif often served in Italian restaurants following a meal. Homemade limoncello can be found in outdoor markets and in artisan fairs.
Local Beers in Argentina: The art of making beer does not receive the same attention it does abroad, but nicely crafted beers can be found here. Buller (located at R.M.Ortiz 1827 in Recoleta) or Antares (Armenia 1447 in Palermo) are both good starting points. It is common to purchase the more popular beers in ¾-liter or 1-liter bottles in bars and restaurants around town to be shared amongst friends. Quilmes is considered the national brand of Argentina, even though a Brazilian enterprise purchased over 90% of the shares of Quilmes in 2006.For more micro-brewed beers here in Buenos Aires
Non-alcoholic beverages include:
Mate: Pronounced (mah-TAY) is a popular beverage in Argentina. Dried and crushed up leaves of the yerba mate are placed into a hollowed out gourd and drunk through a screened straw called a bombilla (bomb-BEE-sha). Hot water is poured from a thermos over portions of the yerba mate in the gourd and sipped through this metal straw. Mate has a distinct flavor and mostly resembles a raw green tea. The beverage contains caffeine and serves as an appetite suppressant. Check out our video on how to prepare and drink mate for a visual example.
During the hot months of summer locals will often switch the hot water for cold lemonade. Drinking in the same fashion with a gourd and bombilla, this is called “Tereré“. This is very common in Paraguay, Southern Brazil and Northern Argentina.
Coffee: Drinking coffee is a popular past time in Argentina. Coffee is typically served 4 ways in Buenos Aires:
Espresso or “café”
Espresso with a little milk or “cortado”
Half espresso half milk or “ café con leche”
Warm milk with a small amount of espresso or “lagrima”
If you would like to research how to order and pronounce the Spanish words correctly check out our article How to Order coffee and Meat in Buenos Aires.
Updated April 17, 2012