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Enjoying great glory across a variety of appellations, Grenache thrives in any warm, Mediterranean climate where ample sunlight allows its clusters to achieve full phenolic ripeness. The grape typically produces full-bodied reds interestingly light in both color and tannins. While it can make a charmingly complex single varietal wine, it also lends well to blending. Grenache's birthplace is Spain (there called Garnacha) where it remains important, particularly in Priorat where winemakers enjoy great liberties in blending Grenache with other varieties. Today it might be most well associated with the red blends of the Southern Rhône, namely Châteauneuf-du-Pape, Côtes du Rhône and its Villages. The Italian island of Sardinia produces bold, rustic Grenache (there called Cannonau) whereas in California, Washington and Australia, Grenache has achieved popularity both flying solo and in blends.
In the Glass
In sufficiently warm conditions, Grenache produces smooth and generous wines that are loaded with strawberry, cherry blackberry, purple plum and in the richest examples, even cocoa, black tea or licorice.
Despite its bold flavors, Grenache has very mild-mannered tannins, which makes it eminently quaffable on its own, yet easy to match with food. Because of its friendly nature, Grenache is the ultimate barbecue red, pairing happily with lamb chops, pork loin or tri-tip. Unlike most other full-bodied reds, Grenache’s low tannin level ensures that it will not easily be fazed by a bit of spice.
Sardinia is often revered for its association with a long and healthy life. Residents of the Italian island often live well into their 90s and beyond, crediting this to their antioxidant-rich red wines, like Cannonau, along with their healthy Mediterranean diet.
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Yalumba Old Bush Vine Grenache 2016Grenache from Barossa Valley, Barossa, Australia
Bonny Doon Clos de Gilroy Grenache 2017Grenache from Central Coast, California
Yangarra Estate Old Vine Grenache 2014Grenache from McLaren Vale, Australia
Cass Winery Grenache 2016Grenache from Paso Robles, Central Coast, California
Beckmen Estate Grenache 2016Grenache from Central Coast, California
d'Arenberg The Custodian Grenache 2013Grenache from McLaren Vale, Australia
Laughinghouse Grenache 2014Grenache from Monterey, Central Coast, California
Cirillo The Vincent Grenache 2015Grenache from Barossa Valley, Barossa, Australia
Los Topos Grenache 2012Grenache from California
Campos de Luz Old Vine Garnacha 2016Grenache from Cariñena, Spain
John Duval Annexus Grenache 2016Grenache from Barossa Valley, Barossa, Australia
Kalleske Old Vine Grenache 2015Grenache from Barossa Valley, Barossa, Australia
Kay Brothers Basket Pressed Grenache 2015Grenache from McLaren Vale, Australia
Cass Winery Grenache 2015Grenache from Paso Robles, Central Coast, California
Cirillo 1850 Grenache 2010Grenache from Barossa Valley, Barossa, Australia