Weekend Wine

Argentina ala Francais

Tapiz Winery is one of Argentina’s great wineries. Owner Patricia Ortiz took what must have been a very expensive step towards world dominance when she hired retired winemaker Jean Claude Berrouet to come be her consulting winemaker to work alongside resident winemaker Fabian Valenzuela.

Fabian Valenzuela and Jean Claude Berrouet (Photo Courtesy of the Winery)

If Berrouet’s name isn’t familiar, perhaps the winery he oversaw for 44 years will be. Jean Claude was the driving force behind Petrus wines.

Just in case you are uninitiated into the world of French hyper-luxury lines, let’s just say Petrus is the Rolls-Royce of French wines. Futures for the unreleased 2016 vintage are currently running $3,000 per bottle! The current vintage, 2012 will set you back $4,000 per bottle. You could choose the 2005 vintage, also still in the marketplace, and take advantage of the case discount to get the wine for $44,388 (that's $3,699 per bottle).

Winery President Patricia Ortiz, MD (Photo Courtesy of the Winery)

Or, you could buy a bottle of Tapiz Cabernet Sauvignon ($19) and at least get a concept of Jean Claude’s winemaking genius. He and his team have developed a fairly priced wine that has some of the magic currant, blackberry, and mineral aromas of his French creations. The two main differences (oh, maybe the third or fourth main difference) are you can happily drink a current vintage of Tapiz. No aging necessary, and probably wouldn’t help much after 4-5 years. The other is price. You can buy 200 bottles of Tapiz for the price of a Petrus.

Chardonnay lovers are similarly advised to check out the Tapiz version ($20). Their Chardonnay is rich, round, full, and equally well suited as an aperitif or a dinner wine. All in all, Tapiz is an extremely successful partnership between Dr. Ortiz and Monsieur Berrouet.

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KEYWORDS FOR THIS POST

Tapiz, Argentina, Patricia Ortiz, Jean Claude Berrouet, Petrus, Fabian Valenzuela, Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, Rolls-Royce, currant, blackberry

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