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Grape Varieties - Carmenère

Carmenère

Carmenère is an historic Médocain grape variety, predating Cabernet Sauvignon in the vineyard of the Gironde's Left Bank. 

It's relation to other grapes has been better understood through DNA profiling and it seems that Carmenère, Merlot, Cabernets Sauvignon and Franc and Malbec are all part of the Carmenet grouping of varietals i.e. are all related in some way.

Carmenère was confused with Merlot for many years in such places as Chile and Italy, but in France, its plantings dwindled after the Phyloxera outbreak, as other vines offering more reliable fruit set (one of Carmenère's weaknesses) were substituted. 

As Malbec in Argentina and Tannat in Uruguay, so Carmenère has become the signature grape of Chile, where experiments are well under way to find the best vineyard sites for this variety.

Signature Style

Signature Style

The character of wine made from Carmenère varies greatly with the ripeness of the fruit at harvest. Herbaceous, aromas and flavours give way to black fruits that become jammy as the acidity falls away. 

Famous Examples

Famous Examples

None

Principle Regions

Principle Regions

Hitherto, the Médoc; now much more likely to be found coming from Chile. Also some in north-east Italy. 

Synonyms

Synonyms

Cabernelle; Cabernet Gernicht; Carbonet; Grosse Vidure.

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