Mendoza: An Argentine winery that was once again chosen as the best vineyard in the world
For the second year in a row, it ranked first in the World’s Best Vineyards, among 1,200 wineries from 18 countries.
Once again the Uco de Mendoza Valley was awarded for its privileged landscape and fertile lands at the foot of the Andes mountain range. The Zuccardi winery Uco Valley came in first in the select World’s Best Vineyards ranking as the“Best Vineyard in the World 2020”. Three other Argentine wineries, two Chilean wineries, and one Uruguayan appear in the top 50 that define benchmarks of marketing, tourism and wine consumption globally.
The surprise for Sebastian Zuccardi,the agronomist who leads this project as a member of a winemaking family, has been to win the prize for the second year in a row since in 2019 they had also been at the top of the podium. “We never thought we’d come first again. They vote for 500 references from the world of wine,” Zuccardi tells Clarín, on a break during his work in Santa Julia, the family’s other winery, in the Mendoza commune of Maipú.
Why is Zuccardi’s Infinite Stone Uco Valley the best vineyard in the world of 2020?
For the owners, there is no doubt what is valued: “We live and make wines in a place with incredible energy. With the magnetism of the Andes mountain range and quality wines competing globally”.
Sebastian understands that the prize encompasses the integral project of Infinite Stone. “It is a recognition of the coherence of the project. Not only the vineyard but the family, the winery, its wines and its restaurant,” he says. And he explains that the winery was inspired by that valley among mountains,with wines showing the “identity” of those terroirs.
Infinity Stone began construction in 2013 and, in March 2016, was opened to tourism. Last year, they received 25 thousand visitors, of which the 70 were foreigners and the 30, Argentines. Visitors must travel just over an hour by car, 110 kilometres, from the city of Mendoza to the winery in the town of Altamira, municipality of San Carlos.
The stone cellar has a production capacity of one million litres of wine. It produces with grapes from three vineyard farms (300 hectares owned by Zuccardi) in different towns of the Uco Valley: Gualtallary, San Pablo and Altamira. His icon wine, which last year was awarded 100 Parker points, is Infinite Stone. It’s a Malbec, 2016 vintage that costs $12,000 in wine.
The Best Vineyards 2020 ceremony was held on July 13 in a virtual way, due to the coronavirus pandemic. The winners were announced through a video with images of the 50 award-winning vineyards.
The ranking awards the quality of wine tourism in more than 1,500 wineries around the world. The organizers clarify that, in addition to evaluating the wines, the whole experience is examined: gastronomy, the tour, the atmosphere, the staff, the view, the price, the reputation, the accessibility and everything that makes a visit a rewarding experience. Voters are international leaders in the world of wine, sommeliers and luxury travel correspondents from around the world.
The list of 2020 winners covers wineries from 18 countries on five continents.
Other Argentine wineries that were 50 best were Catena Zapata (Agrelo, Mendoza), ranked 11th, Bodega Salentein (Tunuyán, Mendoza, Tunuyán), 23rd, and Bodega Trapiche (Maipú, Mendoza), ranked 50th.
The 10 best vineyards in the world 2020
The top 10 of the world’s best vineyards at the World’s Best Vineyards is as follows:
1. Zuccardi Winery (Argentina)
2. Bodega Garzón (Uruguay)
3. Domane Wachau (Austria)
4. Bodega Montes (Chile)
5. Robert Mondavi (United States)
6. Wineries of the Heirs of the Marquis of Riscal (Spain)
7. Chateau Smith Haut Lafitte (France)
8. Quinta do Crasto (Portugal)
9. Antinori nel Chianti Classico (Italy)
10. VIK Winery (Chile)
The best 2020 vineyards in each region
Best winery in South America and the World: Zuccardi Uco Valley (Argentina).
Best winery in Europe: Dojone Wachau (Austria).
Best winery in Oceania: Rippon (New Zealand).
Best winery in Asia: Chateau Mercian Mariko Winery (Japan)
Best winery in North America: Robert Mondavi (United States).
Best winery in Africa: Delaire Graff Estate (South Africa).
Source: El Clarin