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International Grenache Day: top-scoring wines to try

To celebrate International Grenache Day, we highlight a selection of award-winning varietal wines from the Decanter World Wine Awards worth discovering...

Now in its 13th year, International Grenache Day is celebrated annually on the third Friday of September.

One of the world’s most planted grape varieties, Grenache is widely grown in southern France, Spain (where it is known as Garnacha), the United States and Australia. It ripens late, requiring warm and dry conditions to fully ripen, but is versatile both in the vineyard and winery where it is used to make red wines primarily, but sparkling, white, rosé and fortified wines, too.


Scroll down to see top-scoring wines to try this International Grenache Day


Grenache produces round, fruity, powerful wines, often described as having spicy, herbal, raspberry and black cherry characters. The most concentrated, complex, ageworthy examples tend to come from old-vine Grenache, especially from regions such as Priorat, Chateauneuf-du-Pape and McLaren Vale, home to the oldest productive Grenache vineyards in the world.

This International Grenache Day, to celebrate this deliciously juicy grape variety, we highlight a selection of 100% varietal Grenache wines worth a try from the Decanter World Wine Awards 2022, with top results coming Australia, France, South Africa and Spain.

Tasted and rated by our expert judges on the basis of typicity, first and foremost, below discover a selection of the highest scoring, with many more to discover on the DWWA results site here.

International Grenache Day: top-scoring wines to try

Australia

Dandelion Vineyards, Faraway Tree, McLaren Vale, South Australia 2020

Gold, 95 points
Bold, substantial aromas of damson and raspberry compote. The succulence of the red fruit continues onto the palate. It has the best components of the young, fresh, juicy styles as well as structure and extra layers of flavour. Top wine. Alc 14.5%

Heirloom Vineyards, Alcala Grenache, McLaren Vale, South Australia 2021

Silver, 93 points
Lovely, pure, primary blueberry, wild raspberry and dark cherry aromas, with plush, ripe fruits, smooth and supportive tannins and a vein of acidity. Alc 14.5%

France

Domaine Comte de Lauze, Réserve Comte de Lauze, Châteauneuf-du-Pape, Rhône 2019

Silver, 94 points
Very full-bodied, very opulent and flowing. It’s well-structured, with refreshing acidity and ripe, silky tannins. Long, warming finish. Alc 15.4%

South Africa

Piekenierskloof Wine Company, Grenache Noir, Piekenierskloof, Citrusdal Mountain 2020

Gold, 95 points
Intense aromas of nutmeg, ginger, blackberry, freshly roasted coffee beans, and a hint of toasted oak sitting at the back. The palate is very well balanced, with well-controlled fruit, and flavours of black cherry, damsons, olive, and Mediterranean herbs, with a grip of oak on the finish. Alc 14%

Spain

Cariñena

Ignacio Marin, Ballad Old Vine 2020

Silver, 93 points
Forthcoming fresh strawberry, plum and violet scents. Lovely and fresh in the mouth with enlivening acidity and ripe tannins. Long, spicy finale. Alc 14.5%

Castilla y Léon

Bodegas Piedra, Piedra Prohibida 2020

Silver, 93 points
Sweet red and dark fruit scents with notes of thyme and white pepper, grippy tannins and a long, orange peel finish. Lovely wine. Alc 14.5%

Navarra

Aroa Bodegas, Le Naturel Lakar 2020

Gold, 95 points
Flamboyant and intense; ripe red fruit, black pepper, and spices on the nose. Concentrated Garnacha fruit with an amazing texture and firm tannins, supporting elegant red fruit and a long, complex finish. Youthful wine with lots of potential. Alc 15%

Bodega Inurrieta, Mimao Garnacha 2020

Gold, 95 points
An ambitious, structured and glossy wine with oak and quince aromas. Concentrated, serious, deep, exciting Garnacha with plenty of extract and a complex, very complete palate, tannins fine and plenteous, with generous fruit in support. Skilled winemaking. A class act, with a long and impressive finish. Alc 15%

Priorat

Cellers Scala Dei, Masdeu 2017

Gold, 95 points
Beautifully aromatic, refined nose, with dried cranberry, flowers, leather, prune and vanilla which encourage a second glass, and perhaps a third. Superb driving power, but lovely focus. Really stylish with chalky tannins and lively acidity, can’t fail to impress. Alc 14.5%

Rioja

Bodegas Solana de Ramirez Ruiz, Pezon Negro 2019

Gold, 95 points
Superlative Garnacha with red plum, floral, blueberry, herbal, menthol and liquorice aromatics. The palate brings a lovely texture, red plums, vanilla, cacao and blueberries, with toast not far behind and a soupçon of alcohol warmth poking through. Ticks in every box, including the impressive finish. Seamless, irresistible drinking. Alc 15.5%

Fincas de Azabache, Crianza 2019

Silver, 93 points
The delicate nose of fresh strawberries leads the way to a concentrated, velvety wine. Very elegant and super concentrated with a long finish. Alc 14.5%

Tobelos 2019

Silver, 93 points
Lifted red and black fruit nose. The palate is spicy, fleshy and plush with fresh acidity and a long, juicy finish. A very enjoyable glassful. Alc 14.5%

Bodegas Baigorri 2017

Silver, 93 points
Red cherry and blueberry aromas with creamy vanilla and some cinnamon. Soft, rounded and broad palate of dark cherry and vanilla. A lovely discovery. Alc 15%

Bodegas Lar de Paula 2016

Silver, 93 points
Coconut and vanilla nose with hints of cherry fruit and blackcurrant. Juicy and spicy in the mouth with a long finish. Good development potential. Alc 14.5%

Hacienda López de Haro, El Garnacho Viejo de La Familia Acha 2016

Silver, 93 points
Lovely lifted blackberry and cherry aromatics. The palate is concentrated with lovely red cherry and violet highlights, brisk acidity and a honed, oaky finish. Alc 15.5%

Terra Alta

Casa Mariol, Selecció 2020

Gold, 95 points
Perfumes of ripe cherry, herbs, plums, violets, blueberries, baked plums and dark chocolate emerge from the glass and flow onto the palate. It’s full-bodied with firm tannins, a lovely texture and an incredibly long and fresh finish. A really understated sapid style with good ageing potential. Alc 14%

Les Vinyes del Convent, Els Costums 2019

Gold, 95 points
Creamy vanilla oak bouquet with plush ripe red fruit compote — polished and classy. This is well-made in an extracted and rich style. The palate has milk chocolate, smoked meat and bay leaf supported by plush tannins and vanilla oak. It has an X-factor of a long finish, too. Alc 14.5%

Wine of Spain

Bodega Sommos, Lamín Garnacha 2018

Silver, 94 points
Complex herbal, spice, toasty oak and cherry nose with warming alcohol and fair depth. Finishes lengthily. Drink sooner rather than later. Alc 15%


Search all DWWA 2022 results


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