Mendoza a la boca!

As soon as we arrived in Mendoza we hit the ground tasting and dining.
First up was dinner at Francis Mallman’s prestigious 1884 Restaurant in a beautiful old winery outside of town. Having a long career in the gourmet food industry, he returned the elemental roots of Argentine cooking with fire in the outdoors now acclaimed on his gourmet TV show and renown for several of Argentina’s best restaurants.  The first night out of the city in the outdoor courtyard of 1882 inspired in-the-moment glee from Ruth, “Dining outside in the candlelight with grass underfoot and the southern constellations shimmering overhead, we surely have arrived in Argentina!”  
Table setting at 1882 Restaurant.
Anne and Julie with fresh empanadas.
The constellation of plates and wines were equally stunning: goat and beef steaks delivered to our table just steps from the open fire was washed down with aromatic Malbecs in poured in big glasses. We’re now into the Argentine dining groove having been seated for dinner at 10 PM and closing out our first summer’s eve in Mendoza arriving at our colonial hacienda at 1 AM.  
Asador (chef) setting up our plates.
 We awoke the next morning in the peaceable environs of Club Tapiz surrounded by vineyards everywhere. Argentines are able to dine, drink and hang out together late into the night because siestas are built into daily life here. As tourists there’s too much to see and do every day (and on this trip that means much drinking and eating) so we’re at a bit of a disadvantage because we’re not about to take a siesta in the middle of the day on a 13-day tour of Argentina. But, at least on this Wildland Adventure we don’t get started before 9 AM, so I took the opportunity to go for a run down vineyard backroads through rows upon rows of chardonnay and malbec grapes.

Ruth took a quick cat nap after dinner in the garden of 1884 the
first night of our Argentina tour.
keeping it wild,
Kurt Kutay
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