Awhile back I did a close up look at Tannat in my feature Let’s Talk (and Taste) Tannat. Here, I featured the Californian Tannat trail-blazer Yannick Rousseau of Y. Rousseau, who makes two single-varietal Tannats (his Russian River expression, and the more exclusive, single-vineyard expression entitled The Musketeer), as well as a rosé of Tannat. I also called out the Oregon pioneer Troon Vineyard who makes both a single-varietal Tannat as well as a Tannat-Malbec blend.
The truth is, however, that Tannat is somewhat the “heritage grape” of Uruguay — a region I’ve only recently began to explore through various media tasting events. After reading my take on Tannat, I was quickly put into contact with Artesana, a boutique estate winery located in the Canelones region of Uruguay. They, too, are deserving of a noteworthy title, as the creative women who run the winery are (as far as we know) the only in the world to create a unique “TMZ” blend — Tannat blended with Merlot and Zinfandel (the latter varietal being the unexpected ingredient). And so it is high time we take a look at the single-varietal expression of Tannat, straight out of the country the grape now calls home.