91

2019 Pisano Progreso Tannat Reserve, Progreso

( £9.95, 14%, The Wine Society )

The Pisanos are among the most famous wine families in Uruguay, as well known for their asados (barbecues) as their Tannats. This is a really good, well-priced introduction to the joys of the country’s signature grape, relying on fruit rather than oak for its impact. Focused and aromatic, it has classic Atlantic freshness, plum and black cherry fruit and a racy, stony finish. The tannins are way less forbidding than on some French examples of the variety from Madiran.

BuyDrinking window: 2021-26Similar Wines: £5-£10, 90-94, Uruguay, Red, Tannat
93

2019 Viña Progreso Underground Collection Barrel-Less Tannat, Progreso, Canelones

( £26.75, 13.5% )

“A wine of the vintage”, according to Gabriel Pisano, but this is no Beaujolais Nouveau. In fact, this brilliant, unwooded Tannat from one of Uruguay’s best young winemakers, sourced from 30-year-old vines in the Progreso sub-region, doesn’t have to be drunk in a hurry at all. Youthful, juicy and fresh, with plum and black cherry fruit, a stony undertone and sappy, savoury tannins. Just the thing to drink while you’re reading my 2020 Uruguay Report.

BuyDrinking window: 2020-27Similar Wines: £20-£30, 90-94, Uruguay, Red, Tannat
93

2010 Spice Route Chakalaka, The Swartland

( £12.95, 14.5%, The Wine Society )

This isn’t the most expensive brands in the full-flavoured Spice Route range, but it’s often one of my favourite reds from this innovative winery. It’s an appealing combo of no fewer than six grapes, with lots of sweet vanilla oak, spicy clove and nutmeg and a mixture of bramble, red berry and blackberry fruit intensity. Needs a barbecue to show at its best. 

BuyDrinking window: 2013-16Similar Wines: £10-£20, 91-95, South Africa, Red, Carignan, Durif, Grenache, Mourvèdre, Syrah/Shiraz, Tannat
93

2010 Colomé Malbec, Calchaquí Valley, Salta

( £15.99 down to £11.99, 14.5%, Waitrose )

Made at one of the highest, most beautiful and remote estates in northern Argentina, this is a very subtle Malbec-based red, which combines the country’s signature grape with 15% Tannat, Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah. It’s a bright, minerally style, despite the pronounced alcohol, with floral, violet-like aromas, subtle, spicy oak and silky tannins. One of Argentina’s most distinctive red blends. 

BuyDrinking window: 2012-16Similar Wines: £10-£20, 91-95, Argentina, Red, Cabernet Sauvignon, Malbec, Syrah/Shiraz, Tannat