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Tannat #2 – from Argentina

Time for our second Tannat in the ongoing Tannat series.  This one is also from South America, this time from the Mendoza region of Argentina.  As was the case with the wine from Uruguay this producer has a long tradition, with the winery dating back almost 200 years.  This particular wine is from high altitude vineyards at around  2700 feet, typical for Mendoza.  If you head north in Argentina to the Salta region the vineyards are over 6000 feet, so altitude is not unusual around these parts.  This  Tannat brings some nice qualities to the glass, and is significantly different than the Uruguayan option we tried earlier.  Here are the notes:

Mendoza TannatWine: 2013 don Rodolfo Vina Cornejo Costas Tannat                        

Winery Location:  Mendoza Region, Argentina

Tasted By:   Neil & Cheri                             Date:    March 2014

Tasting Notes:     – the wine is very dark purple red, and almost opaque although not quite.  It has pretty substantial legs, with 13.5% alcohol, so there is some significant glycerol as well.  It looks full bodied.  On the nose there is dark fruit, with black currant for sure.  The overall profile is more complex than it seems at first, with some meaty undertones and charred oak.  Those same flavors carry to the palate, where the wine is rich and round, full bodied as suspected, with subtle tannins that build a little at the end and play on the tongue.  As with the Uruguayan Tannat the tannins are not pronounced, and even more integrated here.  It doesn’t come across as this big, hugely tannic wine that the grape is know for.  Clearly the South America versions are softer.  We really liked this wine, and it is an excellent value.  At about the same price as the Uruguayan version, we prefer this significantly.  This makes the value list.  Unusual and good.

Price Point -   about $12.  Available at The Savory Grape in East Greenwich, RI.

Would We Buy It?  – we will buy more of this, it really is quite good.  Not the big, tannic monster you might expect based on the name.  I suspect the Michael David version from Lodi is going to come out swinging though, and we’re still looking for the Madiran version.  We recommend you try this one.

So two Tannats down, and what we’ve learned so far is that the grape in South America produces lower tannins and nice fruit.  This particular version from Argentina is excellent and an excellent value as well.  Next up is the Inkblot Tannat from Michael David Winery in Lodi, while we search for the elusive Madiran.  I think we’re going to start drinking more Tannat.

A votre sante!

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