Red Grenache is one of the grape varieties most intimately associated with a warm climate and, especially, with the Mediterranean. Most experts agree that it originated in the Spanish region of Aragon.
It is a versatile, easily adaptable plant and offers a different profile in a wide range of terroirs while still retaining its true essence. Although Red Grenache can produce wines with a relatively high alcohol content, the general feeling we take away from its wines is one of a certain sweet pleasantness. Depending on where it is grown, it may do better in a cooler location or at high altitudes which hold back the plant’s natural tendency to quickly accumulate sugars.
Some of the best single-variety wines in the world are made from Red Grenache grapes, though it is more commonly found in coupages, or blends, alongside grapes with different characteristics, such as the Carignan or Syrah varieties. Excellent Red Grenache wines (single-variety ones or blends) are found in Spain in the Priorat region and the neighbouring appellation, the DO Montsant, as well as in the appellations of Calatayud and Campo de Borja in Aragon. It is also grown in central Spain, around Madrid, where the granite soils bring out its rustic elegance. It thrives around the southern Rhône and the Languedoc-Roussillon region in France, and it has reigned in Sardinia for centuries where it is known as Cannonau. Recognizing its excellence, winemakers have successfully introduced it into countries like Australia or the USA, where it has adapted perfectly to local conditions and produces splendid wines.
Its aromas of strawberries and cherries, hints of kirsch and cocoa, together with a silky tantalizing feel, are the reasons why its reputation just keeps growing on the world stage.