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100% Grenache

A bottle of 100% Grenache can be something quite special. So to celebrate International Grenache Day (#GrenacheDay) here are all our SWA award-winning 100% Grenache wines from the past 3 years.

If you’re looking for an award-winning Grenache to add to your list or recommend to a client, then look no further.

 

100% Grenache award-winners from 2018

 

Direct Wines France, Madame F, Grenache, Côtes Catalanes 2016, Roussillon, France (£5.11, Direct Wines Production)

Yauatcha City’s Javier Alonso Cardoso enjoyed this wine’s ‘earthy aromas and smoky herbs, good balance of tannin and acids with red fruit and good length’, while Robert Mason of Cheese at Leadenhall picked it as ‘a good by-the-glass pub wine, with baked fruit, raisins and sweet spice on the palate’.

 

Heirloom, Alcala, Grenache 2016, McLaren Vale, South Australia, Australia (£34.65, Heirloom Vineyards)

‘Nice fresh berries on the nose with floral and eucalyptus notes, a balanced palate with great crushed berry flavours and good acidity,’ said satisfied team leader Lionel Periner, with Coq d’Argent’s Andrés Ituarte finding it ‘refined and more delicate in style, really lovely with leather and tobacco, red cherry and currants with violets’.

 

Yangarra, Old Vine, Organic, Grenache 2014, McLaren Vale, South Australia, Australia (£16.73, Boutinot)

A ‘scented and aromatic’ style for team leader Laurent Richet MS, who picked up ‘figs and prunes, dark plum and quite firm tannin structure showing good skills against the power of the wine’, with Elisa Soggia of Kai Mayfair highlighting ‘red fruits and cassis, high tannins but an intense fruity taste, hearty with fresh mint hints’.

 

Casa Mariol, Garnatxa Negra, Terra Alta 2016, Catalonia, Spain (£8.64, Top Selection Ltd)

Rita Kardos of Gauthier Soho highlighted ‘black cherry, plum, caramelised sugar aromas with smooth tannins, red fruit and good acids on a fairly light palate’, while Woodhead 17’s James Fryer found it to be ‘polished, with prune and raisin on the palate, sappy and liquorice notes, a big wine for the price’.

 

Pagos del Moncayo, Prados, Colección, Garnacha 2015, Aragón, Spain (£13.68, Hallgarten & Novum Wines)

Lazaros Engonopoulos of Coq d’Argent enjoyed this wine’s ‘big black fruits, meaty aromas with hints of baking cake, full body and balance, with loads of spice, cooked fruit and rounded tannins on the palate’. ‘Lovely cinder toffee and cassis through the palate and charry toast on the finish,’ added team leader Nigel Lister.

 

Magpie Estate, The Songlines, Grenache 2016, Barossa Valley, South Australia, Australia (£9.56, Boutinot)

Cristian Sánchez of Hotel du Vin Cambridge found ‘sweet strawberries and cherries, raspberries blended with sweet spices, a medium-bodied style with ripe, medium tannins and a long, fruity finish’, while Elisa Soggia of Kai Mayfair also noted ‘juicy red fruits with some wet hay, farmyardy character’.

 

Spice Route, Grenache 2016, Swartland, South Africa (£9.75, Liberty Wines)

A ‘good intense nose of red and black fruits with a fresh palate’ stood out for Janusz Pawel Sasiadek of Bottles & Battles, while team leader Angela Reddin noted ‘coconut vanilla aromas, nice ripe fruit and medium body’.

 

Borsao, Rame, Garnacha 2017, Campo de Borja, Spain (£4.80, Boutinot)

 

Aragonesas, Viña Temprana, Old Vines, Garnacha 2016, Campo de Borja, Spain (£5.67, Davy's Wine Merchants)

 

Aragonesas, Ecce Homo, Garnacha 2016, Campo de Borja, Spain (£6.00, Davy's Wine Merchants)

 

Five Geese, Indian File, Grenache 2014, McLaren Vale, South Australia, Australia (£10.47, Tilley's Wines)

 

Zonte's Footstep, Love Symbol, Grenache 2016, McLaren Vale, South Australia, Australia (£11.52, Zonte's Footstep)

 

100% Grenache award-winners from 2019

 

Boutinot, Brisa de Verano, Garnacha Tinta 2017, Aragón, Spain (£6.55, Boutinot)

For team leader Angela Reddin this Gold medal winner offered ‘lots of soft squashy summer berries, refreshing acidity and a very soft, gentle finish’. Fellow team leader Christopher Cooper described it as ‘juicy, light and quaffable, with cherry, plum and chocolate’ and equally impressed Markus Dilger of Dilger Sommelier Selection simply called out for ‘grilled pork chops please’.

 

Willunga 100, The Hundred Clarendon, Grenache 2017, McLaren Vale, South Australia, Australia (£14.75, Liberty Wines)

Judges were taken with this Grenache’s atypical style, finding it to be undoubtedly deserving of Gold. Team leader Andres Ituarte spoke of ‘oyster shell and worn schist’, while Benares Restaurant & Bar’s Filip Viorel noted some ‘earthy, mushroom notes on the nose’. This was joined, for team leader Tom Forrest, by some ‘minty, medicinal and herbal aromas, as well as cherry and raspberry, with more cherry, ripe berry and some herbal, eucalyptus notes on the palate’.

 

Willunga 100, The Tithing, Grenache 2016, McLaren Vale, South Australia, Australia (£16.57, Liberty Wines)

Judges didn’t hesitate in awarding this complex Grenache a Gold medal. Quentin Loisel of Restaurant Sat Bains described ‘red fruit and blood orange notes, along with maqui berries, blueberries and white chocolate’, while team leader Tom Forrest found ‘eucalyptus, medicinal and herbal aromas’ that led to a ‘soft cherry palate with a herbal, peppery finish’. ‘A very drinkable wine,’ added an impressed Filip Viorel of Benares Restaurant & Bar.

 

Casa Mariol, Garnatxa Negra, Terra Alta 2017, Catalonia, Spain (£9.10, Top Selection)

Suave Wine’s Joseph Lunn found ‘an expressive nose’ with ‘honeyed sweet spice’, while the palate was full with ‘warming primary fruits, a good spicy mouthfeel and a nice sense of balance’.

 

Chaffey Bros Wine Co, Pax Aeterna, Barossa Nouveau, Old Vine, Grenache 2017, Barossa Valley, South Australia, Australia (£12.92, Enotria&Coe)

‘I like this,’ said team leader Jan Konetzki: ‘There’s red, ripe fermented fruit on the nose with hints of dill and fresh herbs. The palate is dry but juicy, fresh and vibrant.’

 

Lapostolle, Collection, Grenache 2016, Maule Valley, Chile (£14.47, Berkmann Wine Cellars)

‘Notably paler wine,’ said Michael Harrison of CuVée VIII. ‘This is quite pretty, with soft red fruits and a sweeter style. Very acidic on the finish.’

 

Chapel Hill, Grenache 2017, McLaren Vale, South Australia, Australia (£14.98, Berkmann Wine Cellars)

 

Zonte's Footstep, Love Symbol, Grenache 2017, McLaren Vale, South Australia, Australia (£11.48, Zonte's Footstep)

 

Robert Oatley, Signature Series, G-18, Grenache 2018, McLaren Vale, South Australia, Australia (£8.72, Hatch Mansfield)

 

Heirloom, Alcala, Grenache 2018, McLaren Vale, South Australia, Australia (£36.73, Heirloom Vineyards)

 

Welgegund Heritage Wines, Grenache Noir 2017, Western Cape, South Africa (£19.23, Welgegund Heritage Wines)

 

Pagos del Moncayo, Prados, Colección, Garnacha 2016, Aragón, Spain (£13.68, Hallgarten & Novum Wines)

 

100% Grenache award-winners from 2020

 

Heirloom, Alcala, Grenache 2019, McLaren Vale, South Australia, Australia (£71.57, Heirloom Vineyards)

'This is real Grenache. Serious Grenache, with an attitude, and the most phenomenally complex aroma of wild berries, pepper, mushroom, gravel and iron. Depth, intensity and generous structure, with wild strawberries and peppery spice, earthy undertones and brooding tannins.' Emanuel Pesqueira, Edwardian Hotels London. 'Ripe and sumptuous, with richness relieved by peppery notes and fresh acid.' Sarah Jane Evans MW, team leader.

 

d'Arenberg, d'Arry's Original, Shiraz/Grenache 2017, McLaren Vale, South Australia, Australia (£11.83, Enotria&Coe)

'A classic, with eucalyptus key to the flavour profile, and lovely fruit, liquorice and mint.' Laurent Richet MS, team leader. 'Mineral, complex and refreshing, with pronounced flavours of red berries and plums, as well as some red flowers and fresh acidity.' Lucie Hammerschmiedova, Portland Restaurant. 'This is rich in flavour, with some lingering depth.' Michael Moore, The London Cookhouse.

 

Boutinot, Brisa de Verano, Garnacha Tinta 2018, Aragon, Spain (£6.55, Boutinot)

'A full-bodied wine with intense black fruit concentration and herbal hints, with just the right amount of bitterness and tannin structure to balance the fruit and acidity.' Laurent Richet MS, team leader. 'Juicy warmed red berries and currants, with some floral, violet notes too.' Tom Forrest, team leader. 'With intense aromas of cherries and blueberries, and good balance, this would be great by glass.' Elena Serban, Heritage Restaurant.

 

d'Arenberg, The Derelict Vineyard, Grenache 2018, McLaren Vale, South Australia, Australia (£15.62, Enotria&Coe)

'Very concentrated and punchy, with forest fruit and a plummy edge, as well as some pepper and a ferrous character too. On the palate the tannins are firm and well-defined, bringing a savoury complexity.' Olivier Gasselin, OenoTrade. 'A chewy, succulent red that's a tad rustic with its tannins, giving it character.' Sarah Jane Evans MW, team leader.

 

Bodegas San Alejandro, Vinas de Miedes, Garnacha, Calatayud 2018, Aragon, Spain (£8.00, Hallgarten & Novum Wines)

'A charming nose of dark cherries, plums and blueberries with a little bit of pepper spice and some floral notes. The balance is spot-on, making this very quaffable, with good harmony between juiciness and structure.' Sam Weatherill, Etch. by Steven Edwards. 'Fresh raspberries and strawberries, red and black cherry, some oak and spice, with good freshness and tannins.' Romain de Courcy, The Ritz Paris.

 

Chivite Family Estates, Las Fincas Blanco, 2 Garnachas 2018, Navarra, Spain (£12.36, Enotria&Coe)

'A great example of a Spanish white wine, showing great balance between acidity and fruit extraction from ripe and juicy grapes.' Jurijs Nemkovs, StreetXO. 'A subtle kerosene note, with an abundance of citrus and salinity, as well as high acidity, make this very gastronomic. Either a dainty lemon sole or meaty monkfish would both work well as pairings here.' Harry Ballmann, Folie.

 

Willunga 100, The Hundred Blewitt Springs, Grenache 2018, McLaren Vale, South Australia, Australia (£16.20, Liberty Wines)

'Creamy cassis and morello cherry aromas lead to a well-balanced palate, with fresh acidity and balanced fruit character, and some nice dried herb notes coming through on the finish, along with that creamy cassis character that persists throughout. The tannins are well-integrated too - grippy without being astringent. A bold style, but well executed.' Charlie Carter, L' Atelier Du Vin.

 

Arendsig, Inspirational Batch 2, Grenache 2017, Western Cape, South Africa (£15.87, Enotria&Coe)

'Elegant and ripe red fruit with some fireplace smoke and forest floor notes too.' Nigel Lister, St. Swithins Wine Shippers. 'Very elegant, with bright red fruit and some fresh acidity.' Lukas Nikanorovas, 20 Stories. 'Great balance here, with some red fruit, a floral hint and sweet spice, with a refreshing finish.' Lionel Periner, team leader.

 

Mont Rubi, Black, Garnacha, Penedès 2018, Catalonia, Spain (£10.95, Jeroboams)

'A sweet red and black fruit nose and nice plummy blackberry fruit on the palate, with a savoury, spicy edge. Quite chewy and dense.' Emanuel Pesqueira, Edwardian Hotels London. 'Blackberry and violet aromas, with slightly grippy tannins and a delicate earthy character.' Valentin Radosav, Gymkhana Restaurant London.

 

Casa Mariol, Garnatxa Negra 2018, Terra Alta, Spain (£9.70, Top Selection)

'With fresh and vibrant red fruit character, this is linear and juicy, with well-balanced acidity and alcohol, and a nice fruity finish too.' Charlie Carter, L' Atelier Du Vin. 'Confident winemaking, showing some cool, calm black fruit, and, overall, some restraint and elegance.' Dave Cushley, Prestonfield House.

 

Oldenburg, Grenache 2018, Stellenbosch, South Africa (£15.78, Jeroboams)

 

Borsao, Tres Picos, Garnacha 2018, Campo de Borja, Spain (£11.55, Boutinot)

 

Bodegas Frontonio, Cuevas de Arom, As Ladieras, Garnacha 2015, Campo de Borja, Spain (£16.20, Bibendum)

 

LGI Wines, Le Beau Sud, Grenache Noir, Pays d’Oc 2019, Cotes de Gascogne, France (£6.52, Matthew Clark)

 

Merchants and Producers: If you’ve got a Grenache that you think could win big in 2021, then make sure you enter it into the competition. Entries open 17 September 2020. Register your interest today.

Sommeliers: if you know of an on-trade Grenache that’s not on our list, and you think it should really win an award, then please do share this blog post with the merchant or producer and help them get the recognition they deserve.

If you’d like to help judge the Sommelier Wine Awards 2021 competition then we’d love to have you! Apply to become a judge today.