I recently participated in a tasting of Garnacha and was really impressed, not only on the quality but the value of the wine.You have your bold Garnacha which is worthy of aging and you have your drink now Garnacha which is a bit more fruit forward and the inbetween.  In any event they are great value. The prices ranged anywhere from $8 per bottle to $23 and these are all wines I wouldn’t hesitate to purchase or give as holiday gifts.  

The first wine we tastesd was made with Garnatxa Blanca or Garnacha Blanc. It’s a white grape related to the red varietal Garnacha.  I really loved acidity and minerality of the Vall Major Garnatxa Blanc.  It had nice notes of limon and hints of pear. The vineyards the grapes are grown in sit at an elevation of 1500 – 2000 feet and you can taste the bright freshness this brings to the wine. I paired this wine with Garlic Pesto Ravioli.  The wine complimented the pesto and also added a touch of sweetness to the cheese. (It’s a good thing I didn’t have a date after eating them) Best part, this wine retails for $8

 All the reds paired very well with the Manchego cheese and my leftover meat lovers pizza. This goes with pairing regional wine to regional cheese.

The 2013 Cruz de Piedra Garnacha from the Calatayud region of Spain is a nice young wine with lots of blackberry aromas coming from the glass.  This is a very young wine and will go well on your holiday table.  A bit acidic and tannic the palate has nice flavors of bittersweet chocolate, black and red raspberries with a nice spice on the finish.  When paired with the manchego cheese, the cheese soften the tannins and the finish has a bit of anise on it.  This wine retails for $10

2010 Finca Bancales Old Vine Garnacha paired extremely well with grilled cheese and tomato soup.  Yes, nice winter comfort meal. The grapes for this wine come from a single vineyard over 90 years old.  It was aged in French oak for 14 months. Lots of black fruit. A soft mellow taste with hints of cherry with a dusting of toast from the oak.  This Garnacha retails for $20

When I talked about bold, the 2013 PDM Moncayo is what I am talking about.  When I first opened it, aromas of green peppercorn and dry herbs filled the air. Lots of tannins  A wine that will age very well.  This wine was aged 10 months in American oak and is unfiltered.  It’s very complex and bold. The Manchego cheese paired very well and softened the tannins of the wine.  This will pair very well with duck, venison and lamb. This wine retails for $23

Pizza wine..yes 2010 Marin Old Vine Garnacha screams pizza!  In fact it paired very well with my meat lovers pizza.  Very light on the palate with notes of blackberry and nice simple complexity. This wine retails for $12