#newwinethisweek Week 10 – Tannat (SW France, Argentina & Uruguay)

I wanted to go for something a little bit different for my choice this week, and by that I mean something I know very little about. For week 10 of #newwinethisweek I have decided to go with a grape variety that has homes in both the old world and the new world; this week’s grape is Tannat.

Historically, Tannat is grown in Gascony, South West France and is the principle grape in the red wines of Madiran AOC. But more recently the grape has been collecting plaudits for the wines produced in South America, particularly in Argentina and Uruguay. Yes, Uruguay!

Week 10 

Madiran, SW France

Tannat is the main grape variety in Madiran, which must make up 40-60% of the vineyard, although some of the top wines from the region are made from 100% Tannat… and that’s OK too… Only in France! The wines of Madiran are highly extracted, highly concentrated and highly tannic – these wines need a good few years to come into their own. I also read that Madiran wines are also known as the most healthy of red wines due to the high levels of procyanidins, which are said to be good for reducing blood pressure, lowering cholesterol and encouraging healthy blood clotting!

Les Tuguets Madiran 2010 (Tesco £11.99 – currently Half Price £5.99; I have issues with ½ price wine deals but will try!)

Chateau Bouscasse 2008 (Wine & the Vine £15.45)

Ode D’Aydie 2010 (The Wine Society £9.95)

 

Argentina

Plantings of Tannat are growing in Argentina, after it found it’s way into the country over the border from Uruguay. Although it’s Malbec that gets all of the plaudits, I have read that the quality of the Tannat wines are going from strength to strength.

Michel Torino Estate El Esteco Tannat 2012, Calchaqui Valley (M&S £7.49)

Don David Reserve Tannat 2011, Cafayete (Wine & the Vine £10.95)

 

Uruguay

Tannat’s second home is Uruguay, where it is considered to be the national grape. The grape is also known as Harrigue in Uruguay after Pascal Harrigue, who first imported into the county back in 1870. Tannat produces softer, silkier wines than those of southern France; Uruguayan Tannat is produced for early drinking, unlike the vins du gard of Madiran.

Gran Bodegon 2009 (The Wine Society £21.00)

 

Mike will be along with some more recommendations at www.pleasebringmemywine.com very soon so keep a look out for those too!

Now all you have to do is pick up a bottle and tell us what you think by giving Tannat a score out of 10 and leaving your tasting notes in the comments section. Where will Tannat end up on the #newwinethisweek leaderboard?

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Posted on March 10, 2014, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. 6 Comments.

  1. Reblogged this on Please Bring Me My Wine and commented:
    Thanks to Ant for kicking us off with Tannat!

  2. Enjoyed with a Mexican chicken, tomato and rice dish:

    Michel Torino Estate El Esteco Tannat 2012, Calchaqui Valley (M&S £7.49)
    Milk chocolate, reminiscent of chocolate ice cream is what hits you first and then the blackberries and blackcurrants kick in – very appealing. The palate is lively with acidity and the tannin is nicely balanced, with plenty of black berry fruit and touches of chocolate and vanilla. Very decent drop for under £8; reminiscent of a Carménère without the herbal edge. 7/10

  3. I went for the same choice as Anthony for this one from M & S, pretty good value I thought for a fairly decent quality bottle. Tannat, another new experience courtesy of Newwinethisweek!

    The colour intensity is rather deep and the nose fresh and vibrant, as you’d expect from a 2012. I definitely got the creamy aromas too, but it was more plums/red cherries for me.

    The minerality the label promises never really materialises on the palate, but the balance is spot on, with neither the acidity nor tannin being over powering.

    The heat of the region certainly shows through on this wine but the length is a bit too short for me.

    I’d assume that its a fair example of this variety for the money, but I’d like to try the Wine & The Vine’s higher level version for a real trial! 6/10

  4. Sunday night… Roast duck with chips and apple/raspberry chutney demanded a serious wine so I went back to the Tannat source… I headed for Madiran:

    Chateau Montus 2007 (Wine & The Vine £21.25)
    Dark opaque appearance and when I decanted the smell of kirsch jumped out at me. I had a small glass about an hour after decanting and the aromas of blackcurrant were there along with some fresh red currant fruits too. As well as this there was musk and old leather – very enticing. Lovely concentration of black fruit but with bright acidity giving it lots of life. The tannins are still hefty and provide plenty of grip, sticking to your teeth, but the fine acidic backbone provides an excellent balance. Was ideal with the rich duck and the raspberries in the chutney really brought the fruit together. 8/10

  1. Pingback: #newwinethisweek – Analysing 2014 and changes for 2015 | Confessions of a Wine Geek

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