Rise of Grenache: Exploring Its History & Popularity in Wine Production

Let's explore the fascinating world of Grenache, a special red grape variety also known as Garnacha in Spain. With a rich history that goes back centuries, this Mediterranean gem has become one of the most widely grown grapes in the world. But what's really interesting is that Grenache is becoming more and more popular among wine lovers, including experts in the wine industry. “Grenache has the rare ability to offer something for every wine lover,” says Sommelier and Managing Director of Praise Wines, Scott Zebarth, “balancing complexity with pure drinking pleasure.” In this blog post, we'll uncover the history of Grenache, discussing its roots and distinctive characteristics, and we’ll get to the heart of why this grape has become a rising star in the world of wine production.

The vineyards of Languedoc-Roussillon in France is one of the places you can find Grenache grapes grown for wine production.

History of Grenache

Grenache originally comes from what is now Spain and Southern France, and it has a strong connection to its birthplace.In France, especially in the famous Rhône Valley, Grenache is an important grape for making wines like Châteauneuf-du-Pape and various other blends. But the Grenache story doesn't end there—it stretches its vines across Italy, Australia, the United States, and many other countries, each giving it a unique flavor. What makes Grenache special is that it can grow in tough conditions. It can handle droughts and really hot weather, which is why it’s ideal to grow it in places like the Mediterranean with its warm and dry climate.

Characteristics of Grenache

Grenache is a true chameleon because it can produce different kinds of wines. Some are light and fruity, while others are rich and complex.
Here are a few characteristics Grenache is known for:

  • It has a higher alcohol content than other varieties (can reach up to 15%)
  • It has lower acidity and soft tannins
  • It tastes like red fruits such as strawberries and raspberries
  • It contains hints of spices, herbs, leather, and tobacco

Grenache can be enjoyed on its own, but it also blends really well with other grapes. In the Rhône Valley, for example, it’s often mixed with grapes like Syrah and Mourvèdre to make really rich and flavorful wines. 

In Spain, it’s even used for making rosé wine, where it’s blended with a grape called Tempranillo.

The rise of Grenache in wine production

Grenache has been getting more attention in recent years and has earned a well-deserved spot in the spotlight of wine production. There are a couple of reasons why it’s become so popular:


  • It’s great for blending with other grapes
  • It adds more depth and complexity to wines
  • It produces high-quality wines across a wide range of styles


If you visit the vineyards in the Rhône Valley, you’ll find Grenache in famous wines like Châteauneuf-du-Pape (as mentioned earlier) and Gigondas.


But Grenache is not just good at being a team player. It’s also gaining recognition as a wine on its own. Because Grenache can make different styles of wine, from light and fruity to rich and complex, it appeals to a range of different wine drinkers.


Grenache has also found a special place among natural wine producers. These winemakers believe in using as few additives as possible, and Grenache is perfect for that because it can make high-quality wine with minimal intervention.

In the United States, Grenache is making a name for itself too. In sunny California, places like Paso Robles and Santa Barbara County are embracing Grenache and making high-quality wines in different styles.

Grenache at Praise Wines

Praise Wines is thrilled to introduce their exceptional red Grenache wine, Bistro Rouge.

Our grapes are grown with love in the sunny foothills of the Black Mountains of Minervois, France,” says Zebarth. “Trust us when we say this place was made for Grenache.”

The team at Praise Wines put a lot of passion and care into making their Grenache wine. It’s made using only Grenache grapes and aged in oak barrels from France for 18 months. The result is a full-bodied wine with berry flavors, accented by hints of black pepper, clove and smooth chocolate.

“Grenache is a grape variety that shines in so many different ways, and we’re passionate about showing you just how incredible it can be,” says Zebarth. “Plus we’ve teamed up with water.org so every bottle sold provides a year’s supply of safe, clean water to someone in need. Sustainability and mindfulness are things we prioritize at Praise Wines, and we hope to make a positive impact on the world with our wines,” he concludes.

Learn all about the social impact of Praise Wines here.


What’s the difference between Grenache and Cabernet Sauvignon?

Grenache generally has red fruit flavors such as raspberry, strawberry and plum, while Cabernet Sauvignon has more robust black fruit flavors. 

Is Grenache wine sweet or dry?

Grenache is a dry wine with fruity flavors.

What is Grenache’s sugar content?

It contains about 3-5 grams of sugar per cup.

What is Grenache wine similar to?

Grenache wine is similar to Pinot Noir because both wines have fruity flavors.