Wine can make you do a lot of things [insert your take on it here], however in this example, we met a couple of Australians who also hailed from our hometown of Sydney; a Russian traveller and a talented sommelier.
Have you ever walked up to a complete stranger especially in a foreign city? Perhaps it was their accent that made your ears perk up, and you just had to introduce yourself. Of course you would have – that’s the beauty of travelling. You get to meet new people and it makes you WANT to meet new people.
We decided to treat ourselves to a few hours at Vines of Mendoza in Argentina in early January 2013. We had just arrived in Mendoza after being on the bus for 7 hours from Valparaiso, Chile. We needed a drink – stat!
Mendoza is well known for their Malbec wines but we decided to tour the vineyards later that week instead. We’d read about Vines of Mendoza from a leaflet we found in our room and we thought we’d check it out. As we were about to be served our first glass, we heard an all-too-familiar Aussie slang from the next table: “…thanks mate”.
Sitting on our left were Brad and Liz, an Aussie couple who had been travelling all around South America for the past few months. It didn’t take long for the four of us to book a table in the wine Tasting Room scheduled for later that day. This is where we met local Argentine, Ezequiel a talented sommelier at Vines of Mendoza. We learned of his travels and dreams of traveling to Australia and New Zealand to expand his knowledge of wines. He has since moved to New Zealand to pursue his dreams.
Moe and I also met a solo Russian traveller earlier that day. There’s nothing better than people-watching over a delicious milanesa and a bottle of vino. I noticed that Artem had great difficulty speaking English and Latin American Spanish with the waitstaff, so I ended up stepping in to help him order his food. We soon learned that his family owned a number of hotels in Russia, and that in his spare time, he would travel to various countries to find the best surf. We invited him to our wine tasting session. The more the merrier!
The six of us met up later that evening for some dinner and cocktails at Cachita’s Cocktail Bar & Restaurant, where the bartender was also a friend of Ezequiel’s.
And so behold, lifelong friends and connections. Thanks wine!
Have you met any interesting people over wine?
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NOTE: This post is in response to/inspired by WordPress Daily Post Prompt: Pleased To Meet You.