Saturday, 13 January 2007

Santiago - Wining & Dining

Food here is relatively very cheap, and the wine is also very good (& cheap). Consequently we've been having a great time hitting up all the top restaurants - we went to Astrid y Gaston on Thursday night, and then Zully last night. With mains ranging from $8-15, it's hard to spend money! Astrid y Gaston was exceptional, we had the degustation there - couldn't look at food until well into the afternoon the next day. Zully was also very good, but a bit too cool for school - we got there at 8:30, and where the first ones there (when making the reservation we actually tried for 8, but got told that was too early!). People weren't really showing up until 11, so we felt a bit like the pensioners dining at 5:30. We haven't really gotten into the whole siesta - eat very late vibe yet.

Santiago also has three very good wine regions within an hour or so by public transport, so we went and did a vineyard tour today, at Concha y Toro, Chile's largest winery. The tour itself was excellent - the vineyard is situated in some beautiful rolling hills with the Andes in the background and has an exceedingly palatial homestead as part of the grounds. The wine was also superb - while they only grow Cab Sav at the vineyard we went to, Concha y Toro (and Chile) is most famous for Carmenere, a grape similar to merlot that for a long time was only grown here, having been wiped out by disease in all other countries around the world. We even got some souvenir glasses at the end of the tour, which are very nice, but might be tricky with the backpacks...

Some photos from Concha y Toro, and their resident devil:









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