Uruguay brought home fourteen gold and silver medals at Vinalies Internationales 2014 in Paris for Uruguay wines
The Uruguayan country has produced wines of excellent quality and as a result Uruguay wines have been awarded for their Tannat wines internationally. Like the Chilean and Argentinean wines, Uruguay produces wines of excellent quality and has been recognized in past international exhibitions, obtaining important distinctions:
Uruguay’s 4 gold medal winners were Artesana’s Tannat Zinfandel Merlot 2011, Remanso Forestado’s Brujula Loca Tannat Merlot 2012, Bertolini & Broglio’s Tannat Exotic 2013 and H. Stagnari’s Amaneceres de Dayman Tannat Petit Verdot 2011.
Uruguay’s 10 silver medal winners were Agroland’s Garzon Viognier 2013 and Tannat 2012, Irurtia’s Tannat Reserva 2011, Varela Zarranz’s Tannat Reserva 2011, Bouza’s Tannat A6 Parcela Unica 2011, Bertolini & Broglio’s Tannat Exotic Sensa Madera 2013 and H. Stagnari’s Gran Cuadra Tannat Cabernet Sauvignon 2011, Tannat Viejo 2011, Tannat Viejo 2012 and Tannat Premier 2013.
The Tannat – The Best of Uruguay
The Tannat variety was introduced in Uruguay by immigrants from the Basque country. In the late nineteenth century Don Pascual Harriague introduced several grape varieties trying to find out which adapted best to Uruguay´s climate and soil. Tannat, which is a native of southern France, was the best.
This type of wine is special for red meats, traditional food from Uruguay and this region of the world. The natural conditions on how the wine grapes ripe make it special. The location of Uruguay in between the south latitudes 30° and 35° and near the Atlantic Ocean makes it perfect for this production.
Tannat is a grape variety known for its intense flavor, very strong color and great body. What characterizes this strain is its violet bordeaux color and tannins that gives the Tannat wine its special flavor. Each region that produces Tannat, even using the same technique, gets a different wine since it is strongly influenced by the soil characteristics and the barrels in which it is fermented and aged.
Nowadays one third of the Uruguayan wine is Tannat. Tannat is mostly produced in the Department of Canelones but 16 out of the 19 regions of Uruguay produce wines. There are over 9.000 hectares of wine production in Uruguay, placing Uruguay as the fourth largest producer of wine in South America.
Although Tannat is the mostly produced wine of Uruguay, it isn’t the only type. There are good wines from other varieties such as Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot or Cabernet Franc, and pink high-quality white wines. Also the mixtures of strains as Tannat -Merlot or Syrah- Tannat, among others are famous in Uruguay.
Many wineries dedicated to the development have grown in quality giving prestige to their brand. The Stagnari, Don Pascual, Ariano, Santa Rosa, Juanicó, Los Cerros de San Juan, De Lucca, Filgueira, Carrau, Alto de la Ballena, Garzon, Bouza and Toscanini are among the most renowned wineries of Uruguay.
Taking a tour to visit the wineries in Uruguay can be a complete wine experience and a chance to get to know Uruguay.
The tours include visits to winery vineyards, the cellar, the production plants and the tasting room. Some wineries have restaurants inside offering menus to match the chosen wines. Moreover in the cellars, wines that are not sold anywhere, either because they are personal harvest of the family or because they are unique, such as the year they were made, can be found.
There are different happenings taking place throughout the year. In some cases further events related to wine or even art which are organized according to the winery. Phoning and booking ahead of time is recommended.
There is also a wine tourism project with fifteen family wineries that came together to organize a full tour as part of the Wine Tourism Association of Uruguay. This proposal is specifically called “Los Caminos del Vino”.
For more information on specific information or Real Estate in Uruguay please contact us.
By Mary Ann Thompson