Drink Like a Gaucho in the Uco Valley

Casa de Uco Vineyards & Restort Credit: Image courtesy of Giorgio Baroni / Casa De Uco

Uco Valley, on the eastern slopes of the Andes, due west of Buenos Aires, is what Napa Valley was 30 years ago—if Napa had colonial Spanish squares and 18,000-foot peaks rising in the distance. Nearly 100 vineyards dot the 45-mile-long valley, named one of the nine great wine regions of the world (which include Napa and Bordeaux). And yes, the reason to come is to let loose your inner oenophile. The vineyards are spread out, so a tour of two or three in a day is an ambitious affair. Which is why it’s far better to settle in at one of Casa de Uco’s new “villas,” module-like suites with a private fireplace, an inner courtyard, and a Jacuzzi on the rooftop patio overlooking the mountains (casadeuco.com). 

There’s hiking nearby, whitewater rafting, and mountain biking—even free cruiser bikes and horse rides to explore the vineyard’s 790 acres. When it’s time to overindulge, out comes the asado, Argentine barbecue, served amid the grapevines, with many of the ingredients sourced from the property’s organic garden. Sitting there, under the high-desert sun, near the resort’s main building—a minimalist edifice of concrete, native rocks, and glass—it’s hard not to feel like you’re at the end of the world, with all that you’d need if the apocalypse came. Yes, everything is going to be just fine.