Grenache (known as Garnacha in Spanish) is a red wine grape varietal, that is in the top 10 most planted varietals in the world. It is known to ripen late, so prefers hot, dry conditions such as those found in Spain, the south of France, California and the Barossa Valley in Australia. When ripe renowned for dark berry-flavours with subtle spices and soft on the palate with a good level of alcohol, but good control on cropping yields is required for best results. Typicality low levels of acidity, tannin and colour, commonly blended with other varietals such as; Tempranillo, Syrah, Carignan and Cinsault.
Grenache is the dominant grape varietal in many southern Rhône wines, especially in Châteauneuf-du-Pape where it is typically over 80% of the final blend.

 

In Australia it is typically blended in 'G.S.M.' blends with Syrah and Mourvèdre. Grenache is also used to make rosé wines in France and Spain, notably those of the Tavel district in the Côtes du Rhône. The naturally high sugar levels of Grenache have led to extensive use in fortified wines, including the red 'vins doux naturels' of Roussillon such as Banyuls, and as the basis of many Australian fortified wines.
DNA evidence suggests Grenache is most likely of Spanish origins, with the northern region of Aragon its likely home. Grenache (Garnacha), was already well established on both sides of the Pyrenees. Despite its dominance in nearby Navarra and Catalonia, Garnacha was not widely planted in the Rioja wine region until the early 20th century, as vineyards were replanted following the phylloxera epidemic.
Grenache based wines tend to be made for early consumption, and with its tendency for oxidation make it a less than ideal option for long term aging. However, producers with low yields, and grown on poor soils can produce dense, concentrated wines that can benefit from some cellaring.
The characteristic notes of Grenache are sweet berry fruits such as raspberries and cherries. When crop yields are kept low, Grenache based wines can develop complex and intense notes of blackcurrants, dark cherries, black olives, mocha-coffee, dark honey, black pepper corns along with mixed spices and dried herbs - enjoy.