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The landlocked country in South America with its capital La Paz borders Peru and Chile to the west, Argentina and Paraguay to the south, and Brazil to the east and north. As in Argentina and Chile, viticulture in Bolivia was founded by Spanish missionaries. Between 1550 and 1570, Augustinian monks came to the region of "High Peru", which at that time included what is now Bolivia. From the north, viticulture came by this route to the southern part to Chupuisaca, Potosi and Tarija, which was opened up for viticulture by missionaries around 1600 and is still the most important wine-growing region today.

Wine-growing regions

The mountainous landscape makes viticulture difficult. One third of the country's area lies in the Andes between 3,000 and 4,000 metres above sea level. There are three climatic zones. The Andes mountains in the west, the tropical lowlands in the east and in between a zone of valleys with a temperate and subtropical climate. However, this is tempered by the high altitudes. Rainfall in the first months of the year favours fungal diseases. Due to the climate, artificial irrigation is necessary, for which the San Jacinto dam is used. The most important wine-growing region is the historic area of Tarija in the Valle Central. The most important Bolivian winery, Bodegas y Viñedos de La Concepción, near the Argentinean border, grows vines between 1,700 and 2,100 metres above sea level. Vineyards in Toropalca with Criolla vines, which are purchased by this winery, are even located at 2,850 metres above sea level. These are among the highest vineyards in the world. Other vineyards are located in the province of Chuquisaca in the Cinti valley and around the city of Camargo with vineyards up to 2,500 metres above sea level, in the province of La Paz near Carito and Luribay, as well as in the province of Santa Cruz.

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Dominik Trick

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Dominik Trick
Technischer Lehrer, staatl. geprüfter Sommelier, Hotelfachschule Heidelberg

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