Bolivia, between its Andes Mountains and Amazon rainforest, isn't necessarily known for sun-soaked vineyards.
But the country is steadily taking off — and winning awards — in the world of high-altitude wines
There's not a ton of room to grow grapes in Bolivia; many of its vineyards are located in mile-high mountain valleys and foothills. The country's wine output may be small, but it's winning big awards.
Bolivia's wine industry is based in the southern city of Tarija, near the southern border with Argentina. This region has long produced small amounts of artisanal wine, as well as the distilled grape-based spirit known as singani, the national drink. But a growing number of wineries here are improving their techniques, ramping up production and starting to export.
While leading a half-dozen wine aficionados through the Aranjuez winery in Tarija, Gerardo Aguirre, export manager for the company, says: “They want Bolivian wine in Chile! Bolivian wine is exotic. We are a high-altitude wine. Here at Aranjuez, we are getting a lot of medals in really serious contests.”