Uruguay is South America's fourth largest wine producer and a hidden treasure of beauty. Being a country of medium dimensions, Uruguay, situated on the Río de la Plata, is located between two countries territorially much bigger. However, Uruguay has implemented stricter regulations in terms of wine production than any other of its neighbors, producing exceptional wines of the highest quality.
Unlike the big producers of the Andean Mediterranean regions, the Uruguayan grape growers of the Atlantic Coast come in almost all the cases from European families dedicated to vine growing. Many are descendants of Spanish and Italian immigrants with generations wholly engaged in producing and marketing the wine.
Uruguayan exports are minimal, but benefit from niche markets, which appreciate the finer qualities and value of these wines. There is an especially high appreciation and consumption of Uruguayan wines in the local market, which consumes almost 30 liters per capita.
Tannat, a red grape known for high alcohol content and levels of tannins, thrives in Uruguay. More than half the area under vines is dedicated to vinifera varieties such as Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Semillon, and Pinot Noir, which mix very well with Tannat. Due to the small production, family involvement, and auto-generated capital, viticulture displays a quasi-European profile, with small parcels and wines of an exceptional originality and personality.
|Official Language(s):||Spanish, Portunol, or Brazilero|
|Geographic Coordinates:||33° 00’ S, 56° 00’ W|
|Population (2006 est.):||3,431,932|
|Per Capita GPD (2005 est.):||$9,600|
|Currency:||Uruguayan peso (UYU)|
|Bordering Countries:||Argentina, Brazil|
|Total Wine Consumption (2001):||984,000 hectoliters|
|Per Capita Wine Consumption (2001):||29.51 liters per capita|
|Total Wine Production (2001):||1,000,000 hectoliters|
|Total Vineyard Acreage (2001):||27,000 acres|
|Prevalent Grape Varieties:||Tannat, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Semillon, Pinot Noir|
|Cheers in Spanish:||Salud!|