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Argentina is a glorious land brimming with culture, elegance and beauty, as well as being rich in natural resources and having an agriculture sector that is export-orientated. During the 1990s the wine industry was transformed. Attitudes switched from focusing on mass produced, badly made wines, of which 90% was consumed internally, to becoming producers of complex, distinctive wines with ageing ability that are now highly desirable throughout the world. The financial crisis from the 1990's-2000's also shaped the wine industry. The peso was devalued thus increasing tourism and decreasing the cost of production. Argentina has an outstanding wine tourism set-up, especially in Mendoza, which is now officially acknowledged as one of the world's top eight wine cities.
The principal wine regions of Argentina are located in the provinces of Mendoza, La Rioja, San Juan, Salta, Catamarca, Río Negro and Buenos Aires, with the Mendoza regions producing more than 60% of the country's wines.
Malbec is Argentina's flag-ship variety, arriving in the mid-19th century, possibly via Chile's pre-phylloxera imports of vines from Bordeaux. The wines produced are at their best densely fruitful and silky in texture, with soft tannins and wonderful ageing potential. Other notable varieties include: Bonarda, which is believed to be identical to Charbono, Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, Merlot, Tempranillo, Sangiovese, Pinot Negro and Barbera.