One look at the thousands of screaming, cheering and drumming fans crammed into the Maracana stadium in Rio last Sunday evening and it is obvious that Argentina has a passion for football perhaps unmatched by any other nation. Win or lose, the Argentine supporters are always the most noisy, the most enthusiastic and most emotional of them all. Regardless if the outcome of the game (unfortunately we lost this one…but we won’t dwell on that!), watching Argentina play, supported by a crowd of Argentine’s, is one of football’s greatest experiences. Unfortunately, I didn’t get to see the World Cup Final in Rio or even Buenos Aires. Instead, I watched from a bar in Shanghai’s French Concession (DAGA Brewpub, in case you’d like to go). Did we miss out? Not at all, the atmosphere was electric! And who was the crowd of local Chinese guests supporting? Argentina of course! For they too could feel the passion – and it had sucked them in. There was no question of who they wanted to score. Every time the incredible Leo Messi got the ball a huge cheer of expectation erupted. All this passion for the game got me thinking. Passion, you see, is a key feature of the way that Argentine’s ‘do things’. It’s part of their DNA. It’s what makes the Tango so mesmerising, the weekly ‘Asado’(BBQ) so awe inspiringly massive, the Polo graciously athletic…and the wine so delicious. When Argentine’s do something, they do it with all their heart. Those that haven’t visited Argentina might not realise just how important a role wine plays in everyday lives. In fact, wine is just as much a part of Argentine culture as football is. On every dining table at every meal, you will find a bottle of wine on the table. Wine is discussed and debated, just as football is. Ability on all has their own favourite and everyone celebrates it with a revered admiration, just as with football. They enjoy it with family and friends, they laugh and cry with it…and also consume it in vast quantity! This passion for wine, therefore, echoes the passion for football and explains why today Argentina is one of the most exciting wine producing countries in the world. So just as watching Argentina play is one of football’s greatest experiences, I would like to think that drinking a glass of Argentine wine is one of wine’s greatest experiences. It’s all in the passion!