(New Worlder) When you think of Mendoza, it’s easy to fall into a Malbec-induced fog, eyes misting over at the thought of that luscious purple grape juice sliding down your throat. But Argentina’s premier wine-producing province is about to take the spotlight for a very different reason, when it hosts the fifteenth Concours A.S.I. du Meilleur Sommelier du Monde Argentina 2016 (Contest of the Best Sommelier of the World) this April for the first time.
This is a major deal, not just for Mendoza but for Argentina to flex its muscles on the international and often Old World-dominated stage. Despite being the world’s fifth-largest wine producer, Argentina’s wares only account for a trifling 2.5 percent of global exports, according to Andrés Rosberg, president of the Argentina Sommelier Association (AAS), who is leading the contest’s logistics charge along with a dedicated AAS team. With 60 competing sommeliers and their national association presidents jetting into town besides industry big cheeses and leading media voices from all around the world, this is the perfect moment for Argentina to prove it really can offer more than Malbec.
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