A Flood of South American Wines on my Tasting Table – James Melendez

Every year I chart out what I want to taste for the year ahead–actually I start planning in December.

My goal is to complete my racetrack of wine tasting.  I borrowed this term from a business operational tool.  I want to make sure I anniversary all wine regions, styles and varieties.  It is something I do on a conscious level to do in order to not over assort in one regions or style or variety.

Just One Portion of a Racetrack

Most years I do not taste enough or even some French, Australian, all central and eastern European wines.  This year I am way over assorted in South American wines; I had to turn away South American samples and I should say it is not all of South America – it is Argentina and Chile.  I also decided to not review some as I was both over assorted in terms of variety and region (I have one more South American wine to review as it is my yearly queue and then I am done with reviewing any more Argentinian or Chilean wines for the remainder of 2016).  I think that perhaps I am on all the PR agencies, marketing and importers list who specialise in Argentina or Chile.  Or perhaps there has been an even greater charge by producers of Argentina and Chile to promote even more heavily.  I suspect it is the later.


I know my readers and viewers fatigue and I do too when I review from only one region.  I have made a conscious choice to not be a regional wine specialist.  I do see some intrigue and fascination but for me bottom line it is an anti-intellectual thing for me to do.  I need to and I feel better when I have the whole scope of the wine world to consider for my painting of words.

I have tasted no Uruguayan wines this year and also no South African wines.  It was this month (November 2016) that I tasted my first Australian wines?!?!

I also want to be clear and not misquoted I still love Argentina and Chilean wines–nothing against the fine wines of these nations but I need to have a greater diversity in my tasting portfolio.

Here is a list I have published in the past and I am preparing for 2017.

Also this year I have taste very few Spanish wines; I have been lucky to taste from so many regions from Italia.  Also no wines this year from Greece.

I am a big believer in tasting wines from all regions and to not just taste but to have on and off-premise in every city.

Let me know your thoughts on wines you see in your market place–do you think your market has an over saturation of any specific regions?



James the Wine Guy

Demystifying Wine…One Bottle at a Time from all wine regions around the world.

© 2016 James Melendez / James the Wine Guy— All Rights Reserved – for my original Content, logo, brand name, rating, rating graphic and award and designs of James the Wine Guy.

Racetrack and South American graphics courtesy of the following under creative commons usage and cited down below – these images I do not own and only using under CC creative commons usage terms.

English: First turn as mandated by FIA
Date 3 September 2011
Source Own work
Author Ronny Astrada

South America image

Source Own work
Author TownDown

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About James Melendez

I love wine and have had the privilege of working in the wine trade as a senior national wine marketing manager for a wine, food and home goods retailer in 30+ US States. I executed into making wine experiential and made 'wines of the world' programme work in a highly regulated framework for a successful business proposition. My "wine" site also incorporates those categories intimately involved with wine such as food, travel and lifestyle. This site incorporates my many dimensions of interest. I love to review and also talk about many aspects of wine. I have been privileged to visit many wine countries and find them enthralling no matter how many times I visit. I love all aspects of wine: viticulture, history, winemaking, brand development, wine regions and many more aspects. This is a living tradition that needs documentation, education, reporting and reviewing. Do I have favourite varieties and styles? I love so many varieties and often it is situational and yet there are time honoured wines that I anticipate and I am passionate about. I like all colours of wine and all styles. I have had a mad passionate affair with sparkling wines and they are always top of mind. Wine nourishes our soul and is the key to connecting with other people at our dinner table. Salute, James © 2014, 2017 James Meléndez / James the Wine Guy— All Rights Reserved – for my original Content, logo, brand name, rating, rating graphic and award and designs of James the Wine Guy. James the Wine Guy also on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, and other social medias.
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