Red grapes varieties
Bobal: A red grape which can give wines very rich colouring. Although its quality is debated, it yields good rosé wines. Found mainly in Valencia, Cuenca and Albacete. Brancellao: Native to Galicia. It is one of the D.O. Rías Baixas authorised varieties, although it is very rare and in danger of extinction. It can produce good quality wine. Cariñena: Produces robust, balanced wines with great body, high tannins and deep colour. An excellent blending complement to Garnacha, it is widely planted in warm and dry climates of Catalonia, especially in Priorat or in La Rioja, where it is known as “Mazuela”. Its bouquet can exhibit notes of dark and black fruits, pepper, licorice, spicy and savory accents though it is rarely found as varietal wine. Garnacha: A high-yielding grape that produces vigorous wines. This is the most widely grown red grape in Spain, especially in La Rioja, Madrid, Navarre, Tarragona, Catalonia, Teruel, Toledo and Zaragoza. For example, it is predominant in Priorat where the climate is dry and hot. Garnacha Tintorera: This grape, also known as Alicante, is so-called because it is the only variety, along with Alicante Bouch, which has coloured flesh (tintorera comes from the verb teñir = to dye). It is widely planted in Albacete, Alicante, Orense and Pontevedra, and it is considered a main variety in Almansa DO. Graciano: This grape variety is very well-known in Rioja where it is often blended with Tempranillo. It’s a low yielding grape, which produces highly prized wines. Young Graciano wines are very tannic, rough and tart, but develop superbly during ageing, both in cask and bottle. Mencía: According to recent studies, this grape is very similar to Cabernet Franc. It produces high quality wines and is most widely planted in León (68%), Zamora, Lugo and Orense provinces. It is considered a main variety in Valdeorras and Bierzo DOs. Monastrell: Interesting red variety used mainly in Jumilla (Murcia) and Catalonia, where it produces juicy, jammy wines with lots of fruit character. Known as Mourvèdre in France. Moristel: Unusual grape found in Somontano and Aragon, makes young fruity wine. Negramoll: Another red varietal from the Canary Islands, often blended with Listan Negro. Pinot noir: It is widely considered to produce some of the finest wines in the world with a very intense and distinguished perfume. But is also a difficult variety to cultivate and transform into great wine. The essence of Pinot Noir wine is its aroma of strawberry and cherry. This variety is also a vital ingredient in the production of sparkling white wines. Syrah: It’s not an indigenous Spanish grape type, but it’s grown in places like Castilla-La Mancha. It’s a dark-skinned grape grown throughout the world and used primarily to produce powerful red wines. This type of grape is often blended with others. Tempranillo: Spain’s most famous and noble grape. It originates from the word “temprano” (“early”), a reference to the fact that it ripens several weeks earlier than most Spanish red grapes. It has many synonyms such as Cencibel, Tinto Fino, Tinto de Toro etc. Tempranillo wines are ruby red in colour, while aromas and flavours can include berries, plum, tobacco, vanilla, leather and herb.