16 hours bus ride for a half day in Mendoza, Argentina
On our way back from Buenos Aires to Santiago we wanted to stop by Mendoza for some good wine and steak because it's the wine capital of Argentina and make about 90% of all wines in the country. However, we ran into mishap... we missed our intended bus. We booked a bus for Saturday Jan. 7th night to get into Mendoza Sunday morning and have about 1.5 days before heading to Santiago. That's about enough time to see the city and do a bike wine tour.
I guess you can blame both Mel and I for this because I have a track record for missing buses, this would be #3, and told myself I would get to the bus station from now on with ample time. While at the hostel I was rushing Mel and wanted to leave by 7:15pm for our 7:45 bus since it took about 20-25 minutes to get to the station. We didn't get going until about 7:25 so we got there with about 1 minute until department. However, we didn't take into account having to go through the station and find the bus. I have a lot more stuff than Mel and this is where it went against me. I wasn't able to walk fast enough to catch up to him. He was able to rush to the bus as it was departing but the bus driver wouldn't stop since I wasn't behind him... which meant another day in Buenos Aires but this time at a hostel with A/C.
So we ended up going to Mendoza the next night and got into the city around noon and could only do a half day wine tour. I was considering to extend my stay by a day but I would have had to go to the bus station and change it in person but I was too lazy to do it.
We visited 3 wineries and 1 olive oil farm. I think my favorite was the olive oil farm... Although I love wine and the tasting part was great, the tours were all pretty boring and awkward. They weren't entertaining at all, except for the last one, will go more into that. But the olive oil farm we were able to learn a lot more about the process that I had no idea about and then taste a ton of different olive oils and balsamic vinaigrette.
- Did you know: all the different color olives actually come from one tree? They just harvest them at different times so the colors are different. Green is the youngest, then purple, then black.
Argentina is known for their Malbecs because of the climate, soil, and other things that affects the growth of grapes. I really enjoyed the Malbecs I had with my wine in Buenos Aires, and I've never been a big red wine drinker.
At each place we saw how they made wine and to be honest, it was all pretty boring. We couldn't actually see any of it happening, just looking at big machineries. I wish we were here during harvest season. I would be down to come volunteer and pick grapes for a few weeks and then actually witness the whole process. We got 2 to 3 different types of wines to try. The last place we went to was owned by the richest family in Mendoza and their winery had all these different add-ons like a restaurant, an underground wine storage, a salon for big parties, and many others.
I wish we had the full day and could have done the wine tours on bikes. That would have given us the freedom to go to whichever one we wanted, visit as many as wanted, and also see more of the area.