Entertainment and Events
Mendoza has plenty to do at night. The liveliest nightlife area is the barhoppers’ row of Arístides Villanueva, where there’s a lot of turnover; El Abasto (Arístides Villanueva 308), which hosts live rock and roll, has lasted a while, however.
Most Mendoza cinemas are suburban multiplexes, but there are irregular programs downtown at the Microcine Municipal Davíd Eisenchlas (9 de Julio 500, tel. 0261/449-5180), in the basement of the Municipalidad. The Cine Teatro Universidad Nacional de Cuyo (Lavalle 55, tel. 0261/420-4549) also shows occasional films.
Dating from 1925, Mendoza’s major performing arts venue is the remodeled neoclassical Teatro Independencia (Chile 1187, tel. 0261/438-0644, www.teatroindependencia.com.ar). The subterranean Teatro Quintanilla (tel. 0261/423-2310) is part of Plaza Independencia’s modern art museum complex.
For live folklore and tango on weekends, along with regional cuisine, try El Retortuño (Dorrego 123, Guaymallén, tel. 0264/431-6300, www.intertournet.com.ar/elretortuno), a few blocks south of the bus terminal.
Vines of Mendoza (Espejo 567, tel. 0264/438-1031, www.vinesofmendoza.com) is a contemporary tasting room in a private patio location around the corner from the Park Hyatt that specializes in vintages from local boutiques and also serves appropriate snacks to complement the wines. Open 3–10 p.m. Monday–Saturday, it also host events such as Wednesday’s “Meet the Winemaker” that features one local specialist every week.
At the nearby Park Hyatt, its Vines Wine Bar & Vinoteca (Chile 1124) hosts Friday night social gatherings (US$10) that include three glasses of wine from a highlight bodega, accompanied by tapas or other finger food.
Mendoza’s biggest single festival is March’s moveable Fiesta Nacional de la Vendimia (www.vendimia.mendoza.gov.ar), celebrating the autumn wine harvest over a four-day weekend that starts on Friday. Filled with concerts and parades, it ends with the queen’s coronation in Parque San Martín’s amphitheater.
Mid-February’s Vuelta Ciclística de Mendoza is a major road race for bicyclists. August’s Festival de la Nieve marks the ski season.
© Wayne Bernhardson from Moon Argentina, 3rd edition