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With most Mendoza restaurants closed on New Years Day, we only had a few options. But PH concierge Barbara came up with a gem. "How about dinner at a chef's home?" Really? Si, sign us up. On a quiet residential street a short 10 minutes from the PH is Ituzaingo Resto, one of the most unique dining experiences we have ever had. Gonzalo is an amiable host and creates a thoroughly enjoyable evening of wine, food and conversation. Gonzalo's friendly boxer Titi, welcomed us at the front door.   

Gonzalo and his GF/SO.

Outside, the courtyard is beautiful with multiple seating areas in different settings under the trees. Only four other guests tonight made it a small and convivial group.

The tiny kitchen where the staff creates amazing meals.

We all enjoyed a variety of wonderful taste sensations, staring with gazpacho.

Great ceviche.

And the best empanadas of the trip.

For starters, we had a choice of fresh salad with trout or beef carpaccio.

For the main, I had the filet.

Perfectly medium rare.

Our buddy.

A quick three hours later, we bid adieu after a most enjoyable evening. Iuzaingo Resto, Gonzalo and Titi are musts for anyone visiting Mendoza.

PH concierge Jessica arranged a great day of wine tasting starting with Cobos and Ruca Malen. After checking out, we left the PH with our bags around 10:30A. Our personable driver Nicholas dropped us off at Vina Cobos. This great winery is part owned by Napa winemaker Paul Hobbs.

Excellent introduction to Cobos from our host Pablo.

And a tour of the facilities.

Followed by wine tasting in an intimate setting with only two others, a lovely Dutch couple who live in Barcelona.

Sad to leave, but more wine and food await a few kilometers down the road.

Next up was Bodega Ruca Malen where we had lunch reservations.

Spectacular setting on a perfect day.

Our front row table.

And great views of the Andes.

And a great lunch with six different wine pairings.

What an amazing lunch in an idyllic setting!