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Monday 8 November 2021

The nitty gritty on gluggable grenache

Grenache, or garnacha, is one of the most widely planted red wine grape varieties in the world but a for many years it merited little respect in Australia.

A late ripening variety that thrives in warmer parts of France and Spain, it was widely regarded in Australia as a variety used only in fortified wines.

Usually spicy and full-flavoured, grenache thrives in regions like the Barossa - its spiritual home in Australia - and McLaren Vale.

it is also used in blends in Rioja, in Spain, and is the dominant variety in many southern Rhone wines, including Châteauneuf-du-Pape.

In Australia, it is often blended with shiraz and mourvedre/mataro.

A new book: Grenache-Barossa Grown, co-authored by writer Steve Leszczynski with Brett Hayes, owner at Hayes Family Wines in the the Barossa, has been self-published and self-funded and gives the full down on the grape.

Experts like Rick Burge and Kevin Glastonbury from Yalumba have also contributed.

"Grenache is truly the underappreciated, if not undiscovered, jewel in the crown of the Barossa," the authors say.

"For such a long period, grenache has been the workhorse of the Barossa Valley and the foundation variety for the region’s world-renowned fortifieds.

"Tenacious old growers need to be thanked for maintaining the faith and keeping so many of these precious old vines in the ground."

With a RRP of $20, hard copies of this fascinating and professionally put together book will hit the shelves mid-November.

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