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Source: HOMEFRONT magazine FALL 2013

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Living The Winemaker’s Dream

In the beautiful rolling foothills of the Sierra Pintada Mountains, the San Rafael region of Mendoza province offers sprawling ranches, gorgeous vineyard estates and rural open countryside; it’s frequently touted as “the Napa Valley of Argentina” by wine enthusiasts.

Now, thanks to some clever development plans, investors and families looking for a home in the vines are able to live the winemaker’s dream without the stress of growing and harvesting the grape themselves.

Our invitation to visit comes from the vineyards of Algodon Wine Estates And Champions Club—a 2,050-acre parcel of land in the coveted Cuadro Benegas district where a comfortable inn, championship golf course and an enclave of custom homes are being built.

The promise of Pima

Mauro Nosenzo has served as the winemaker at Algodon since 2007. The land where he grows his vines is especially rich thanks to the glacial runoff from the snow-capped Andes that nourishes his crop.

And if Nosenzo’s 2009 Pima (a deep red blend of Malbec, Syrah, Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon that has a delicate, soft and subtle fruit finish) is any indication of what can be expected, then clearly this winery has a bright future.

Vines of your own

Named one of the top Vineyard Inns in the world by Frommers, the Algodon Wine Estates offers comfortable estancia-style accommodations in a quiet vineyard setting. Offerings include the Algodon Villa, a private lodge that was built in 1921 and has now been fully Restored to its original farmhouse design, with adobe walls and a rustic cane roof. This nostalgic home offers an intimate gallery as well as three charming suites with fireplaces and vineyard vistas. Its sister, Algodon Lodge, has five spacious suites as well as a gallery with two fireplaces. Expect large bathrooms with stone tile décor as well as access to wraparound stone patios that add lovely views of the estate.

Guests enjoy daily complimentary breakfasts, as well as tours and tastings At the winery, 18-hole green fees for two, and use of a 24-hour concierge service. For those who want to stay forever in this bucolic setting—and who could blame them—custom-built vineyard villas are tucked into lush vineyard settings.

Al fresco as it should be

Chef Gastón Langlois’ clubhouse restaurant is set amid the vines and olive groves, and features traditional Argentinian clay ovens and a flamebroiling pit. Meals are casual and use local fare from a variety of estate-grown fruits, nuts and vegetables: Walnut, pear and plum orchards are seasonally picked. We dine in the evenings when temperatures become surprisingly cool; lunches are long, languorous affairs enjoyed family-style on the sprawling wraparound patio.

Another nice touch: Algodon Extra Virgin Olive Oil. This exquisite, robustly flavoured, full-bodied oil comes from the Pendolino, Arauco and Empeltre olives that grow in the half-century-old olive groves throughout the property.

Perhaps living here would indeed be a dream come true!

About Algodon Wine Estates:

Algodon Wine Estates' family friendly atmosphere and location makes for a remarkable holiday destination. Algodon Wine Estates was recently named one of the world's top vineyard inns by Frommer's and named one of the world's best wine resorts by Departures Magazine! Now wine lovers can buy Argentina vineyard real estate at Algodon, and build a custom luxury home on a private vineyard, golf or polo estate.  Enjoy the privilege of world-class wine production, and leave the winemaking to us.

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