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A grape that originated in Spain and then spread to the south of France, where it thrives in the Rhone Valley and is mostly used as a blending grape with Roussanne and Marsanne for Cotes-du-Rhone and Chateneuf-du-Pape blancs. Cuttings of the variety were brought over to California in 1992 by Tablas Creek, a winery located in Paso Robles. All subsequent plantings of this grape in the US are from their stock with around 100 acres planted throughout the state. It seems to thrive in the hot days and cool night of the Central Coast. Initially, California winemakers also blended it into Rhone-style blends. Over the past few years, there has been a significant increase in varietal bottlings from about 3 in 2006 (from Curran, Beckmen and Tablas Creek) to over 15 in 2008 and more on the horizon. It's hard to come by unless you hit the wine trail (most versions can only be found in tasting rooms), this grape is certainly on the rise and one to watch out for. Though fairly easy to grow, its' current obscurity renders most CA bottlings in the $20-$30 range; however, if a winery is going to bother you can bet the quality is going to be pretty high. I have yet to encounter any French 100% versions though Spain is starting to bottle it on its' own as well. It is now in second place behind Roussanne for my favorite white wine. Sorry, Viognier.

WHAT TO EXPECT: A rich, medium-bodied, crisp, moderately aromatic wine that features mostly ripe green apple, pear, lemon and stone fruit flavors along with some minerality and honey notes. Though it has bright acidity, it rounds out as the wine warms, delivering a lush and lengthy finish. Drink within 2-3 years of vintage.

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spacer.gif2011 Bodegas Pablo Menguante "Blanco", Carinena, SpainRATING: **
spacer.gif2010 Vinedos de Ithaca Odysseus Garnacha Blanca, Priorat, SpainRATING: **
spacer.gif2009 AM/FM Grenache Blanc, Santa Barbara, CARATING: ***
spacer.gif2008 Anglim Winery Grenache Blanc, Paso Robles, CARATING: ***
spacer.gif2008 Epiphany Cellars Grenache Blanc, Santa Barbara, CARATING: ***
spacer.gif2008 Jaffurs Grenache Blanc, Santa Barbara, CARATING: ***
spacer.gif2008 Katin Grenache Blanc, Paso Robles, CARATING: **
spacer.gif2008 Las Colinas del Ebro Garnacha Blanca, Terra Alta, SpainRATING: **
spacer.gif2008 Topanga Vineyards Celadon Grenache Blanc, Santa Barbara, CARATING: **
spacer.gif2008 Zaca Mesa Winery Grenache Blanc, Santa Barbara, CARATING: **
spacer.gif2007 Beckmen Vineyards Grenache Blanc, Santa Barbara, CARATING: ***
spacer.gif2007 Curran Grenache Blanc, Santa Barbara, CARATING: **
spacer.gif2007 Tablas Creek Vineyards Grenache Blanc, Paso Robles, CARATING: **
spacer.gif2006 Beckmen Vineyards Grenache Blanc, Santa Barbara, CARATING: **



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**** Outstanding | *** Delicious | ** Enjoyable | * Drinkable
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