10 essential facts about the Grenache grape

The most recent wine from Familia Martínez Bujanda,
Petra de Valpiedra
has the particularity of being made with the Garnacha grape variety. This type of grape was the most widely used in Rioja vineyards and Garnacha was one of the factors in the unmistakable flavor of Rioja wines. During the 20th century its prominence declined because other varieties, such as Tempranillo, posed fewer difficulties for its cultivation and gave higher yields.
However, Grenache is a grape that makes it possible to age wines of great quality, and taking advantage of the launch of Petra de Valpiedra, our wine that recovers the flavor of the most authentic La RiojaWe would like to dedicate a few lines to this type of grape, as widely used as it is unknown to the general public.
1- Are you of Spanish origin?
It is true that for a long time it has been thought that the origin of Grenache is Spanish, specifically Aragonese, but recent studies have shown that it has existed in Sardinia for 3,200 years. What is certain is that the Crown of Aragon expanded it from the 12th to the 17th century throughout the Mediterranean area. And its roots in Aragon are such that today it is the Spanish region with the highest production of this type of grape.
2-It is one of the most widely planted red wine grapes in the world.
According to data from “
Focus OIV 2017
“, the report of the International Organisation of Vine and Wine (OIV), Grenache is the tenth variety with the most hectares planted worldwide, seventh among red wine grapes. According to the OIV report, in Spain, Garnacha occupies 6.4% of the hectares (third variety in total, second among red grapes).
3- Where does its name come from?
Apparently, the word Grenache has its origin in the Italian word ‘vernaccia’, formed from the name of the town of Vernazza, in the region of Liguria, located in the northwest of Italy and famous for its wines.
4- There are varieties of white Garnacha grapes.
Although garnacha is mostly associated with red wine, the truth is that within the variety there are white grapes. Its origin is believed to be a mutation of the Spanish red Garnacha. Today it is grown mainly in the Rhône wine region and in northeastern Spain. Wines made from Grenache Blanc are characterized by a high alcohol content and low acidity, with citrus and herbaceous notes.
5-Success in Australia
Grenache was one of the first varieties to arrive in Australia in the 18th century and eventually became the most widely planted red wine grape variety in the country until it was overtaken by Syrah in the mid-1960s.
6-Spain, Grenache country
Spain is the country that produces the most Grenache wines in the world. In addition, the variety is found in all Spanish regions except Galicia, Asturias and the Canary Islands.
7-Traditional in the old Rioja
In the past, this variety was the most widely planted in Rioja, but later lost importance in favor of other varieties that are easier to care for and offer higher yields.
8-Global impact
Since 2012, a worldwide competition has been awarding prizes to the best Grenaches in the world. Born in the French town of Perpignan, its headquarters currently rotates among other cities.
9-Wines with little color
It produces aromatic wines, with low color, high alcohol content, medium body and good acidity. It is also characterized by its rapid aging and sensitivity to oxidation.
10-Rugged and multipurpose grapes
Its vine is very vigorous and needs little water, in addition to effectively resisting sunstroke. It can grow without problems in poor soils of rubble, clay and limestone. It is, therefore, a resistant grape capable of developing in climatic conditions that other varieties cannot withstand.

Leave a Reply