Friday, December 5, 2008

Out of the Closet and into the Wine Cellar?

Anyone who's been to Buenos Aires since the political and economic meltdown of 2002 is aware that the city has become the THE top gay travel destination in all of South America, and one of the most important in the world. This week's Economist provides a good summary of BA's gay appeal, with its vigorous nightlife (including a gay milonga or tango dance club), Latin America's most liberal domestic partnership laws, and even the five-star "hetero-friendly" Axel Hotel on the edge of San Telmo.

Another of Argentina's attractions, for all sexual orientations, is the country's wine. As far as I know, though, Buenos Aires is the only city in the world with an openly Gay Wine Store, near Plaza San Martín in the upscale barrio of Retiro. Personally, though, I'm bewildered as to what constitutes gay wine, and would appreciate it if anybody could clue me in. Red, white, or rosé?

3 comments:

  1. Wine that makes you HAPPY!

    --Vinagoth

    PS: I'm a breeder.
    PPS: Ironically the captcha for posting this comment is "suckie"... I kid you not!

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  2. It surprised me that something like "gay" wine store exists...I have never heart about that and I dont think it is really necessary - you can find good wine in "common" wine store. I really haven't got the sense of something like that...

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  3. You should know that the Gay Wine Store hasn't existed for quite some time. It closed after last tourist season, probably in February or March, due to lack of business. I interviewed the store manager at one point who wanted to make it clear that "no one connected with the store is gay, really, none of us are one of them" - though she alluded to the possibility that their interior designer might have been "one". The whole premise behind the store was capitalizing on the "disposable cash" that the sudden influx of gay tourism was meant to bring to the city - as we put it in an article, "grabbing for the pink peso." They did have a wine called Pilot, which was their house brand - she didn't seem to have any explanation for the name or as to what it had to do with the gay community, but she did make sure to point out that no one with the winery was gay either.

    There are a few "gay" wineries out there, like Rainbow Ridge in California, that are gay owned and operated, and give a percentage of their sales to various gay charities.

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