Almost a dessert wine, this bottle is super sweet. As I am not a huge proponent of sweet reds, the sugar content of this bad boy was a deterrent to me - but not one to my dinner guests. A matter of taste, the wine itself was fragrant and flavorful, with a nose that reeked of red and black berries and a fruit-juicy, peppery flavor on the palate. Two things to note: the finish was short and a bit abrupt, and this bottle DOES. NOT. AGE. WELL. If you open it, you'd better be willing to drink the whole thing, because it's sickeningly sweet even a day after (and it has a screw-top lid!). This grape is frankly more of a "supporting grape" (*giggle* see below!), and I think it does more to enhance the flavors in blends than it does in a bottle all by its lonesome. Still, overall it was not terrible, but not terribly enjoyable (for me) either... if you want a sweet red that's meatier than a rosé but semi-higher quality than most of the nasty "sweet reds" (see one of my earlier "don't drink this even if your life depends on it" posts) ... go with this. Cheap, sweet, and fairly unobtrusive if you can balance out the sugar with your food.
And now... for a "teachable moment"!
Below is an excerpt from the varietal page for the Grenache (aka "Garnacha") grape, found on the "Appelation America" site (join for a small fee each month if you want to learn a lot about wine as well as have access to some great - and often hysterical - tasting notes and wine lists). As a member, I won't divulge all the secrets I pay for on a monthly basis, but I find this description of Grenache to be fitting and entertaining:
Grenache-You’re a member of the ‘Rhône Ranger’ band. Your groupies think you’re ‘hot’, even when you're boozy and "strung out". You’re hairy, yet they want you, and you’re always a willing partner. Is it your Spanish heritage that makes them crazy? Perhaps, but really it’s because you have a rather sweet personality. Grenache you’re the most famous backup guitarist, playing a lightly tannic beat in some of the better groups.
Pairing: We drank this bottle with pasta and red sauce... WRONG. The sugar in the bottle + the acidity in the sauce = nasty migraine for me (and a nasty, lingering taste in your mouth for anyone who dares try this combo). Better enjoyed, as I said above, as a heavier dessert wine (don't get me wrong, it's not intended for this purpose, and WILL NOT play nicely with other very sugary things), this could also pair well with fatty foods like stews and lambs - something heavier to balance out the sugar (but not overwhelm it with acidity *cough* pasta dish *cough*). Again, it all comes down to preference ... I'd drink this wine with a bread pudding or some pumpkin bread before I'd eat it with meat (after all, I love my Zins!), but you might like it for dinner - as always, try it and feel free to let me know!
Wine: Miyone Garnacha Seleccion Old Vines, Vintage 2009
Purchased: The Wine Source, Baltimore MD