I love grenache. I love it alone, and I love it blends. I love old vines, and new. I love grenache as an ice (seriously!) and as a rose.
- 1. Grenache has nice body, heft, weight.
- 2. Grenache is supple and rich.
- 3. Grenache has lots of strawberry, raspberry, and blackberry fruit.
- 4. Grenache can have a nice spicy kick to it!
- 5. Grenache has a pretty rosey garnet color.
- 6. Grenache goes great with pink and white meats like lamb, pork loin, salmon, but you can also enjoy it with a beef stew.
- 7. Grenache blends well with other wines.
One of the most widely planted red wine grape varieties on the planet, grenache vines get better with age.
Today is a great day to celebrate all things grenache because today, the third Friday in September, is Grenache Day.
Plus it’s a Friday and I had a GREAT week teaching! I taught all my college comp students how to blog (gotta check out Keleigh’s “Chubby Squirrels” blog!) and then this morning I did writing and creativity workshops with four classes of fourth and fifth graders. This evening I head to an art reception at the Ventura Country Government Center where I paired poems of mine with paintings by Julieanne Case and we won a prize!
So the question is, what do I have to open? I first fell in love with grenache when I bought a bunch of AUS wines made by Chris Ringland and others from the Grateful Palate warehouse sales, but those are long gone. In honor of Grenache Day 2011, we opened Core’s Grenache, and in 2012, we tasted four: one from Horse Heaven Hills AVA by Alexandria Nichole, two from Lodi California made by Mike Brown at Cantara Cellars in Camarillo, and one from Thompson Vineyards in Santa Barbara made by Adam Tolmach at Ojai Vineyards. Read about these wines and how Grenache lifts your spirits here.
However, I scrounged around and found a few of my beloved Rhone style blends: a 2003 and a 2004 Le Cigare Volant from Bonny Doon Vineyard (2003 is 35% mourvedre, 32% syrah, 26% GRENACHE, and 7% cinsault and the 2004 is 38% GRENACHE, 35% syrah, 12% mourvedre, 8% carignane, and 7% cinsault and these wines would certainly get me in the mood to write about this year’s Cargo Cult themed BURNING MAN!), I have a 2001 and a 2002 Vin du Soleil from The Ojai Vineyards (the 2002 is slight on the grenache while the 2001 is 72% GRENACHE, 14% mourvedre, and 14% syrah), and finally, I found on the shelf a 2010 Qupe Maxtap Cuvee (syrah, GRENACHE, tempranillo, mourvedre). I bought all of these wines except the 2004 Bonny Doon (which I was gifted at a Wine Bloggers Conference), and all but the Qupe are what I’d call very special occasion wines which for me means they cost around $40 or more (even with club and industry discounts). I think I picked up the Qupe at the Ventura Wine Company for around $15 which makes it a very friendly price for tonight (even though syrah is the leading grape!) My friend Tim Cabrera commented on facebook that this is a really nice wine, and I definitely trust his palate, especially when it comes to central coast Rhone wines like grenache and syrah.
If you want to celebrate with me, it’s easy! Just open a bottle of grenache or a blend that includes grenache! And please share what you’re drinking below in the comments, on twitter or on facebook! You can also join an organized event and join other grenache enthusiasts. See what other people are saying about grenache by checking the hashtag #grenacheday on Twitter.
Why do YOU love grenache and how do you plan on celebrating grenache day?