The Signature Varietal of UruguayOriginating from the Madiran region of southwestern France, the Tannat grape was introduced to Uruguay in the 1870s by Basque immigrants. Tannat has transformed itself into the "national variety," adapting itself perfectly to the local soil and climate.
Tannat grows especially well in Uruguay and is softer and more velvety than its French counterpart. Uruguay is the only country in the world where significant amounts of Tannat are grown, more than in its native France. Tannat now represents approximately a third of all wine produced in Uruguay. Tannat is increasingly grown in California, Virginia and Texas with great success and is gaining traction in the U.S. market.
Tannat produces rich, full-bodied wines with dark fruit and spice aromas and flavors well suited to accompany beef and other meats. Tannat can be made in many styles, both elegant and bold. Its complexity and structure make it an excellent wine to blend with Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Syrah.
Tannat is a strong wine with great personality. Named for its high tannin content, Tannat has been found to be the healthiest of red wines with 3-4 times more antioxidants and an average resveratrol concentration of 4.2%.
Uruguayan wineries are also producing other award-winning wines of outstanding quality such as Merlot, Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Tempranillo, and whites such as Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Albariño and Viognier.
Tannat: Nutritional Properties
Read what André Dominé says about Uruguayan Tannat in his book "The Unique Wines of Uruguay"