(Grenache pronunciation: Gren-ah-shh)
Grenache has been an extensively grown grape throughout the world, making it a great varietal we feature in our monthly Wine Clubs. We have featured single-varietal Grenache wines as well as Grenache blends in our Garagiste Wine Club, Platinum Wine Club and Gold Wine Club.
The Grenache grape is a widely planted varietal that is believed to have originated from northern Spain (known as Grenacha) due to its love of hot, dry climates. Similarly to its white counterpart, Grenache Blanc, the varietal made its way through southern France where it has become a prominent vine throughout the Châteauneuf-du-Pape and Gigondas regions as well as the Rhône Valley - now concurring more than 230,000 acres and making France the world’s largest producer of red Grenache. Moving to Italy, Sardinia, California and even arriving with some of the first vines introduced to Australia in the 1800’s, the varietal has made a name for itself as a sturdy grape for a wide range of wine growing regions.
Grenache vines have evolved perfectly for the Mediterranean which grow surprisingly vertical and strong; able to withstand powerful winds and even thrives in drought-like conditions. Although great for growing, the thick canopy makes it difficult to use modern harvesting equipment and results in, more often than not, hand-harvested grapes. With early bud break and a late ripening, Grenache requires a long growing season which, in turn, elevates the sugar content in the grapes and ultimately develops into higher alcohol content in the finished wines. Although the skins can be dark purple in color, they are thin and produce relatively light red wines with minimal tannins. Nevertheless, as the vine ages, the grapes tend to form darker pigment while also deepening the color of the wine.
Wines made from red Grenache are characterized as being aromatic with fruity qualities. Responding best to long, cool fermentations followed by a maceration period, winemakers are able to retain as much vibrance and complexity as possible. Grenache-only wines are full-bodied with aromas and flavors of raspberries, strawberries, black cherries, spices, roasted nuts and black pepper. The single-varietal wines are gaining popularity in recent years even though Grenache has been used primarily as a blending grape such as in the Casa Dumetz 2014 GSM (Grenache, Syrah, Mourvèdre blend) we featured as a Plus! bottle in our Gold Wine Club. When blended, Grenache can add depth, body and intense complexity while in return, the varietals it’s blended with give Grenache a boost in acidity, tannins and richness of color.
Discover our available Grenache wines from our Wine Store below and try one for yourself!
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Site Wine Company
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