The Mendoza region of Argentina is one which seems to be going from strength to strength. Thanks to the remarkable qualities of the land, the fertility of the soil and long ripening period the climatic conditions provide, we’ve seen Mendoza wines go from big, fruit-forward crowd pleasers to something full of subtlety and complexity over the past decade or so. This has been due in part to the fact that Argentina’s wine industry is being dominated by a new generation of vintners, keen to put their region on the world’s wine map, and generate a voice and an identity for Mendoza.
One such winemaker and winery is Familia Zuccardi - quickly becoming a household name in Mendoza, and gaining recognition fast elsewhere in the world as masterful vintners and people who are really helping to establish their region is one of the best in the new world. Their interests are far-reaching, and not merely confined to wines. Indeed, their olive oil is highly praised, and they have their own art gallery which pulls in visitors, too! However, at the end of the day, it all comes down to the wine, and Familia Zuccardi are clearly interested in highlighting the quality of their land by experimenting with lesser known grape varietals, which are ideal for expressing their unique and characterful terroir. At Familia Zuccardi, we find Ekigaina, Aglianico wines alongside Bourboulenc and Albarino - none of which have historically been associated with Mendoza (or anywhere else in the New World), but which clearly thrive in their vineyards.
The winery was founded in the 1960s, and has consistently been at the forefront of the experimentation and innovation for which Mendoza is being increasingly recognized. One of the key factors in this, for the Zuccardis, is a commitment to sustainability. The Zuccardi family are very much a family business, with plans to establish the winery as their ancestral home. As such, they are keen to express that in order for them to continue producing their characterful and unique wines for generations to come, they must make a significant effort to protect and maintain their land. To this end, they are gradually turning their production over to organic farming techniques, with almost half of their vineyards and produce certified organic to this day. The results speak for themselves - innovative, delicious wines which are at once fascinating and unique, while also being distinctly Argentinian.