We had to pool our remaining Argentinean Pesos with Trevor for the hotel, dinner and gas! Luckily we know where to go in San Raphael for money and it is only 85 km away. Arriving Dan and Trevor talked to the contact, but he said the boss would return in an hour, so we used our last few pesos for coffees and a submarino (hot milk and good chocolate). The rest of the drive to Mendoza on the 40 is a strait highway, but now we have al driven the entire Ruta 40, except the 100 km of pavement between Perito Moreno and Baja Caracoles. On the way Dan’s F800 hit the 90,000 km mark.
It was no easy feat to find a place to stay because of the wine festival. We got a place with parking on the sidewalk out front for 1 night and then moved to a better place with a secure parking lot for the next 3 nights. We are sure glad we did because there were thousands of people out on the streets day and night all weekend.
The Thursday we did a walking tour of the main square and the 4 surrounding parks.
The main square has a huge fountain and the spray was nice and cooling.
It’s always wine time in Mendoza!
The Plaza de Chile had huge palm trees and several memorial statues.
The Plaza Italia was lined with banners and Italian tile fountains.
The Plaza Espania had an amazing tile surface with hand painted inlay tiles, which were all different. There was a huge mosaic depicting the Spanish conquest.
We finished of with the square closest to the hotel Plaza San Martin. Friday we drove 35 km south again to the wine region along the Camino del Vinos (the road of the wine) and then for a tour and a tasting at Chandon.
For lunch we could not get a reservation at any of the Bodegas (no surprise), so it was 6 $ lunch at Mr Dog.
Saturday night we headed out to watch the Queen’s parade. The streets were lined with people. We had heard the princesses threw gifts from the floats. The first few we saw tossed small bunches up grapes.
Enterprising people had baskets on long sticks to collect their prizes. What we saw next was better. The girls tossed out apples and pears and the crowd went nuts for it. The 2 best were the floats where they were tossing whole melons and grilled meat that they were cooking on board.
We skipped the Mc D even though you got a Malbec with your combo and had sausages instead.
Well today was a bit sad again as we said goodbye to our friend Trevor from Calgary. We have really enjoyed his company over the last month. He is headed back to Bogota to ship to Miami.
Today’s parade was a bit more political with various groups represented. There were also traditional floats, Gauchos, and dancers.
For a treat today I had Malbec ice cream! YUM
We looked up a place for a Saturday night out dinner and found “Downtown Parilla” about a 20- min walk away. The Internet was right! Great food and service! We had a delicious veal carpaccio and this 9$ steak (roast), which was cooked perfectly.
One of our favorite wines on the trip has been Luigi Bosco, so we booked for a tour and tasting on Sunday on the way out of town.
The have storage for 9 million liters at the production facility. They use American and French oak, but are doing an experiment using Chinese and Russian barrels.
They have 37 products including table wines, fine wines, exclusive vintages, sparkling, and even 1 late harvest.