Review: Wines of Patricia Ortiz – Tapiz, Zolo, and Wapisa, 2018 Releases
Patricia Ortiz is the impresario behind three Argentina wineries: Tapiz, Zolo, and Wapisa. These wineries are primarily located in the Mendoza region, the exception being the new Wapisa, which is located just 25 miles from the Atlantic Ocean on the Rio Negro in central Patagonia.
Ortiz’s crew sent us six wines from across these three wineries to review, which we’ll jump into now.
2015 Tapiz Chardonnay Alta Collection Mendoza – Loads of vanilla set the stage here, with a little lemon kick underneath. A bit over-sweet, it’s a porch-sipper at heart, though the floral notes on the finish at least hint at some hidden complexity. B- / $20
2015 Tapiz Malbec Alta Collection Mendoza – A workhorse malbec, the berry underpinnings are vivid, but they find companions in tobacco and licorice notes, leading to a somewhat gritty, earthy finish. A bit raisiny, with hints of chocolate, it isn’t overwhelming in its complexity but it has enough going on to merit a weeknight pickup. B / $18
2013 Black Tears by Tapiz Malbec – Succulent and rich, this well-aged, berry-laden wine is voluptuous and full of life, rich with blackberries, chocolate sauce, and hints of toasted coconut. Laced through with licorice, tobacco leaf, and lots of plum, the body is profound in its depth and breadth. The wine drinks perfectly today, but will probably be even better in five more years, with another 10 years of life after that. One of the best wines I’ve tasted this year. A / $50
2017 Zolo Torrontes Mendoza – Tons of honey here, with a bit of a lemon kick to back it up. Florals build up heavily in the glass — reminiscent of viognier, with a sharp apricot and nectarine note on the back end. Bracing, but a little goes a long way. B / $15
2015 Zolo Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve Mendoza – 100% cab. Elegant stuff, which is not the norm for Argentina. Light florals are present on the nose, but the overwhelming note is dried berries, more blackberry than currant, with overtones of tobacco and hints of sauteed mushroom. The finish is like a stroll through an evergreen forest, though these piney notes are well balanced with the underlying fruit and lingering earth. A- / $21
2017 Wapisa Sauvignon Blanc Mendoza – Heavy with citrus fruit, boldly lemony, without a pineapple in sight. A slight vanilla edge on the finish adds a little sweetness to what would otherwise be dominated by more sour notes, making it into a versatile, if simple, table wine. B+ / $17