Benjamin McIntosh, NPTS ’19


Ben in Argentina visiting a vineyard waiting to see if its going to rain.

Returning to South America has been a dream of mine for the past few years and I can’t imagine a better setting in which to fulfil this desire. Combining so many of the privileges of travel (food, wine, big cities, night life, education) into a cultural and learning experience served as a fantastic way for me to see both more of the world as well as adding to my degree here in Monterey and my future career. 

As I think back about the trip, I’ve come up with a few tips and tricks to help a first time traveler to Argentina. First, the Spanish they speak is different. The call it “Castellano”, speak with near Italian emotion, the “ll” is a “sha” not a “ya”, and the command structure, while easier, is nothing like Mexico or Spain. Second, it’s a meat culture. Expect beef and lot of it everywhere you go. Their definition of “a punto” is a little over cooked for my medium-rare taste so be specific when ordering. Also, house salads are little more than lettuce, raw onions, and a few quarters of tomato. You have been warned. Three, you must try Fernet. The bitter digestive is almost always harsh and off-putting the first time you try it but trust me, give it another go and you’ll probably come around. Plus, when diluted with Coke as is the style, it’s hard to hate for long. Finally fourth, remember to relax and have fun especially in Buenos Aires. All you will hear from locals is that it is the most dangerous city in the world and you will 100% get robbed but don’t listen to them. It is just like any other big city in the United States or any other country. Keep your wits about you and you’ll be fine.

View a video of Carlos and Ben’s work on environmental wine in Argentina.

Click here to view Ben’s blog post of Mendoza, Argentina.

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