San Juan Wine

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San Juan is considered one of the most important wine zones, located within the Cuyo province in Argentina. It is the second largest in terms of production next to Mendoza. 
 
The climate is very hot and dry, nearly desert-like. Irrigation arrives in the form of snow-melt from the Andes mountains in the west, and the San Juan and Jachal rivers. It is also thankfully prone to brief summer rainfall. The dry, hot Zonda wind helps protect from excessive moisture and vine disease, but also can lead to drought conditions. The high altitude of the vineyards ensures optimal sun exposure and grape ripening. 
 
Criolla and Cereza grapes were the dominant varieties in the early days, but these are now mostly used for brandy, vermouth, and local fortified wines. Dry wines are produced from Torrontes, Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, and Viognier for whites. Reds consist of Bonarda, Malbec, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, and Syrah. 
 
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