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You wouldn't be here if you weren't curious.*

Hi! I'm Elena! Welcome to my travel blog Creativelena.com.
For me, it is all about “life-seeing instead of sightseeing”: Join me as I create, eat & live my way around the world. Curious?

*Check out my book, “The Creative Traveler’s Handbook”, for learning more about what we mean by creative travel. Travelling means the world to me, makes me fit for everday life and sometimes, I trust, also calmer on the inside. Read this blog with a smile, share what you love and remember to check back regularly: After all, when was the last time you did something for the first time?

Visiting Top Wine Estates in Mendoza


Gourmet Travel, Travel With Locals, City Travel, Argentina, Travel Blog , 0

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Being invited to the Festival Nacional De La Vendimia 2013 – Argentina’s largest annual wine event in the city of Mendoza – I was literally over the moon with happiness when the final confirmation came in. Four days of wine tastings at top-notch bodegas, red carpet access to the parade of “Las Reinas” (Wine Queens) as well as an invitation to experience the final concert of the Mendoza wine harvest festival: Together with 60 TV journalists, international media representatives and bloggers from more than 10 countries in Latin America and Europe, me and my group of friends have literally been treated “a cuerpo de rey”, or bathed in warm-hearted, genuine Argentinian hospitality as they say. Wow!

 

Winesome Welcome: Bodegas Cheval Des Andes & Renacer

A sign with my name on it, a luxurious black limousine and my personal chauffeur welcoming me at Mendoza Airport: Normally travelling Argentina with my backpack, I could easily get used to more of this 😉 . At the very same day of arriving in Argentina’s wine capital city, Mendoza, we are taken to visit two exclusive wine estates at the foothills of the Cordillera de los Andes: Cheval Des Andes and Bodega Renacer.

Here, the respective owner together with their professional staff make sure we are totally engulfed in our experience of the splendour of Argentine wineries, complete with tapas, tastings & famous “asado” (BBQ). To me, it is all very much New World: Large gardens, never-ending rows of vineyards, huge reception halls and state-of-the-art technology. A wonderful and very interesting experience: As a wine traveller hailing from some of Austria’s top wine regions, it appears to me like a true heaven on earth!

Im Weingut Renacer ("Wiedergeburt") werden wir mit köstlichen Speisen des Hauses empfangen - ganz im Sinne einer echten "Hauerjause" ;)

At the Wine Estate Renacer, we are being served delicious local food, almost like a cold platter in Austrian wine regions I know – lovely! 😉

Unterhaltung vom Feinsten: Der Besitzer des Weinguts Renacer stammt ursprünglich aus Chile und erzählt uns alles Wissenswerte zu seiner "kleine, aber feinen Qualitätswein-Produktion".

Delicious entertainment: The owner of the wine estate tells us all we need to know about his quality wine production.

Gemütlich lassen wir den ersten Abend unserer Blogger- und Pressegruppe am Weingut Renacer mit Musik & Grillend ausklingen ...

Our group of journalists and bloggers take to relaxing with music and good wine … sometimes, it really is a hard life …

Bodegas Atamisque, Trapiche & Las Marujitas: A Kingdom, A Story and A Dream

During the following three days, we are invited to visit three more excellent and outstanding wine estates in Mendoza province, including Tango shows, horseback riding & olive oil tasting. (Research) work & pleasure mix to the point where it all becomes one amazing experience: Everybody is enormously friendly and busy to ensure all questions get answered, our group of international bloggers & journalists is a wonderful backdrop for constant interaction and if that was not enough, Latin American mentality is there to spice it all up – just in case. Hours of delay and constant warm-hearted cheek-kissing with everyone: Welcome to “la pura vida” of South-American blog / press trips, I’d say. Great 😀

Beautiful too not having to organise it all myself, relax and lean back during these few days: very nice indeed.

Erstes Gruppenfoto: Vor dem Ausritt auf dem weitläufigen Anwesen des Weingut Atamisque.

First group picture, taken right before going on horseback at Atamisque Wine Estate.

Gegessen wird hier wirklich überall ausgezeichnet: Auf den Weingütern Mendozas fehlt es an nichts ...

Food is what we are being spoilt to all over … Mendoza Wine Estates literally have it all, you won’t starve here for sure.

 

At Atamisque Wine Estate, we enjoy a “cabalgata”, or horseback ride whose properties are owned by a Belgian family, turning 1.000 hectares into vineyards, fruit plantations and land used for activities such as kayaking, cycling, golfing or horseback riding. At the reception we are invited to, we can see the family loves to entertain – kingdom-style, clearly!

Unser Anführer hoch zu Ross entführt uns in entlegene Winkel und hinauf auf die Hügel der Landschaft des Weingutes: Ein kleines Königreich inmitten der Weinlandschaft Mendozas.

Our guide takes us out to hidden corners and up on scenic hills in order to enjoy the magnificent wine landscape of this private property – a true kingdom spreading out over 1.000 hectares!

Im Rahmen unserer Einladung verkosten wir die verschiedenen, typischen Linien des Weinguts, von Reserve bis hin zu jungen, fruchtigen Weißweinen.

As part of our tasting experience, we are offered to try the different varieties of the estate, such as Malbec, Chardonnay or Cabernet Sauvignon and Pinot Noir.

Zur formellen Eröffnung eines Neubaus des erst acht Jahre alten Weingutes sind zahlreiche nationale und internationale Gäste / VIPs geladen .. so auch wir!

Alongside many international (VIP) guests who were invited on the occasion of the formal opening of parts of the estate, we enjoy being spoilt at Atamisque Wine Estate!

 

Furthermore, we visit Trapiche Wine Estate, an estate full of history dating back to the 1880s: The first of several train lines to Buenos Aires was built here and can still be seen walking around the winery. Viticulture runs along the lines of biodynamic growth as only one in four in the whole of Argentina, steeped in the philosophy of Austrian pioneer Rudolf Steiner. The size though is what makes a visit to this beautiful estate literally mind-blowing: Almost 1.000 hectares yield a total of 35 million litres of wine per year – dimensions incomparable to average-sized Austrian wine estates with a size of “just” 25 hectares …

Der Malbec mundet hier ganz besonders, aber auch der Weißwein - Torrontés - kann sich sehen lassen: Genüssliche Weinverkostung am Weingut Trapiche, einem der ältesten von ganz Mendoza.

Malbec Cabernet is especially worthwhile tasting here, but their white wine – Torrontés is equally stunning: A Must-Do when visiting the wine growing area of Mendoza.

Meiner Kollegin schmeckt vor allem der Rotwein hier ausgezeichnet!!

My blogging & photographer friend from Japan prefers red wine, clearly!

Fisch-Risotto & kleine Hamburger gefüllt mit süßen Paradeisern und Asado-Grillfleisch mit getrockneten Zwetschken munden in diesem Garten hervorragend ...

Fish risotto and small hamburgers filled with juicy tomatoes, dried plums and delicious asado meat just taste wonderfully in this estate garden filled with an olive grove …

Blick auf die Bodega Trapiche mit ihrer alten Eisenbahnlinie. Foto: Bodega Trapiche

A view of Bodega Trapiche complete with its old railway tracks. Photo: Bodega Trapiche

 

Last but not least, we are being invited to spend half a day at “Las Marujitas“, a family wine estate combining olive trees, vineyards and boutique farm stays with a top-notch organic gourmet restaurant. The family house dates back to the arrival of some of the first settlers to Mendoza (1865) and has carefully been restored – stunning just to visit. Everything here is designed to relax and enjoy, each morning the owners meditate together with their employees – a very interesting concept!

Zu Fuß erkunden wir einen Teil des Anwesens "Las Marujitas" und erhalten in dieser Bar köstlichen Sekt und kleine Häppchen!

We explore “Las Marujitas” on foot and are welcomed with small snacks and delicious sparkling wine at this bar house!

Der Hausherr Fernan unterhält uns mit seiner spannenden Familiengeschichte zu den Werten und der Philosophie des Anwesens "Las Marujitas".

Fernan, “el dueno”, fills us in on all things “Las Marujitas” and tells us some interesting facts about the buildings, the history of the settlers and his very own life story.

Das Haus der Familie hält einige spannende, historische Details bereit und ist schon aus geschichtlicher Sicht einen Besuch wert.

The family house is very interesting for its history and should be visited on any occasion of travelling to Mendoza and its wine regions.

 

All visitors arriving at “Las Marujitas” are invited to a delicious olive oil tasting learning about the virtues of extra virgin olive oil, including fresh products from the local, organic farm that are served to us in the restaurant.

At the end of our trip, I would like to seize the opportunity to introduce you to three amazing bloggers I got to know during this trip. Buenos Aires based Aldana & Dino literally make “Magia En El Camino” as they travel the world: As a professional magician, Dino entertains children and adults around the world with pure magic, his wife Aldana films, documents and writes: www.magiaenelcamino.com.ar. Lucina aka „Mochila Cult“ (Cult Backpack) was born to a family of Argentinian emigrants living in Brazil writing and editing her blog and travel videos in Portuguese. Check out both blogs and Mendoza wine estates: All are definitely worth the trip!

So eine Olivenöl-Verkostung macht Spaß: Zuerst erwärmen wir das Öl in diesen speziellen Verkostungsbechern auf ca. 28 Grad, damit sich die Aromen für Nase & Gaumen voll entfalten können.

We really enjoy our unique olive oil tasting experience here in Mendoza: First of all, we heat up our tasting cups to about 28 degrees for allowing all aromas to unfold and perfectly hit our nose and taste buds.

Als Gruppe, die in vier Tagen viel erlebt hat, genießen wir unsere letzten Stunden in der wunderschönen Atmosphäre von "Las Marujitas" gemeinsam.

As a group of friends towards the end of our four days together, we really enjoy sharing wonderful moments at “Las Marujitas” restaurant and bar.

Diese Vorspeise mit sonnengereiften Tomaten und köstlichem Oliven-Chutney kann sich wirklich sehen lassen ... Toller Geschmack der auf der Zunge zergeht!

This entrée made up of sun-kissed tomatoes, local ham and dried olive chutney is a stunner: Definitely try while you are around “Las Marujitas” in Mendoza!

Das Highlight ganz zum Schluß: Cremiges Eis mit hausgemachtem Olivenöl und Pfeffer ... eine geschmacklich gelungene Kreation, wenn auch nicht jedermanns Sache!

Last but not least, my very own recommendation as I did enjoy the taste: Ice cream spiced up with pepper and home-made, extra virgin olive oil … A wonderful combination for all the adventurous sweet teeth out there!

Disclaimer: I have been invited by the city of Mendoza tourism marketing on this trip to experience the national harvest festival as well as all the above-mentioned wine estates: Thank you so much everybody for your support! All opinions are my own.

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Written by Elena

Elena writes about creative destinations, shares her personal travel stories and brings inspiring photography & interesting news updates home to you. Her mission is: "Continue to be amazed at this world, one creative travel experience at a time."

Ready for learning even more about creative travel?

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4 Comments

  1. Daniela

    Hi Elena ! We are very happy you enjoyed your stay in the Mendoza wine country ! Your comments are great and will surely contribute to many people interested in visiting our province. Thanks so much and hope to have you here soon ! Cheers ! The Mendoza Holidays Staff

    Reply
  2. Elena

    Dear Daniela & team,

    I will come back as soon as I can: You have so much to offer besides your incredibly beautiful, warm-hearted & genuine hospitality here in Mendoza and all of Argentina, for that matter.

    Any time you wish to travel to Europe, please do not hesitate to contact me – You are most welcome 😀

    Have a great day and see you soon xxx

    Reply
  3. Marie Wanibe

    Hello Elena 🙂
    How are you??? Im your Japanese photographer friend we met in Mendoza! How are you?
    Do you already come back to Austria??? I will go to Japan next week to have a baby there :-)]
    I will introduce my web page too. My blog is ” http://www.wanibemarie.jimdo.com” Someday I want to be a travel blogger like you☆
    Hope to see you again!

    Marie

    Reply
  4. Elena

    Hi Marie,

    Good to hear from you, I will keep my fingers crossed for you and your beautiful boy 🙂 I am sure it will be fantastic and full of emotions !!

    Thanks for sharing your blog with me, looks really good and I hope I can read the English language version soon 😉

    Best wishes and keep in touch,

    Elena

    Reply

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