The historical discredit in Spain of Grenache grape is far removed. The reason why it was considered a minor grape was because it was appreciated as a grape used for blending wine and, although it still in many cases fulfils this function of blending with other wines, great wines have been obtained from this grape.
Characteristics of Grenache
This type of grape has different varieties of which two stand out: the “tintorera” and the “tinta”. The first is that which mainly makes this blending paper, since it has very appropriate characteristics for this purpose: a coloured pulp and high tannin content.
However, it is the Garnacha Tinta variety that has turned out to be the second most cultivated red grape variety in the world and in Spain, since it is found in more than 240,000 hectares of the country.
To be more precise, geographically, Garnacha is found mainly in Navarra, Catalonia, Madrid, part of Levante and La Mancha. As a historical curiosity, in Murchante, Navarre, in the mid-1970’s all the vines of this type began to be planted in order to cultivate other foreign vines; however, in a few years they had no choice but to replant them again due to the great demand of this variety.
Focusing on the representative characteristics of its strain, what stands out the most is its resistance to drought, pests and diseases. As for the grape, it is black, with thin skin and juicy flesh. These characteristics mean that, in general, its wines are vigorous, with a scarce colour and maroon colour, its body is not very acidic and, if they come from sunny places, they are wines with a high alcohol content.
The property that harms it is its high oxidability and rapid maturation, which causes the difficult vinification in wines that are not suitable for aging, and therefore in some areas are made with this varietal rancid wines or dessert. However, from old vines and in suitable soils great wines have been obtained.
Some of the best wines made exclusively from Garnacha grapes
These are some of the best Spanish wines made with Garnacha grapes that you can find. If you can afford it, buy one at least!
With 96 points from the Guía Peñín, this magnificent Montsant wine comes from centennial Grenaches.
Another amazing Pérez Landi wine with 95 points from the Guía Peñín.
Perhaps the best wine of Navarre, this monovarietal of Garnacha is made by Artadi, a guarantee of quality, as shown by the 95 points of the Guía Peñín.
The 96 Parker points speak for themselves. An explosion of aromas and flavors for this DO Campo de Borja wine.