Mendoza is the main viticulture zone in Argentina, due to the favourable quality of the soil and a favourable climate suitable for the fiery, red Malbec and crisp, golden Torrontes. Mendoza Province is one of the driest places on earth, yet it produces 70% of Argentine wine. The Andes mountain range catches any cloud blowing in from the pacific, meaning there is very little rain. However, there is snow. Mendoza’s capital has been made in to a large productive oasis through a complex system of rivers and dams where water flows down from the snow-capped peaks. Every leafy town in the province is surrounded by hundreds of vineyards and farms producing everything from olives to peaches. Mendoza’s wineries are set in some of the most spectacular scenery in South America. There are around 1500 wineries surrounding Mendoza City. Many of these going right back to 1561 when the city was founded by the Spaniards. Argentine wine exports are now increasing exponentially. Winning international awards, Argentina is hot on the heels of nearby Chile when it comes to worldwide recognition.