Mourvedre grape variety | red wine grape | Bandol | Ventoux | France Restaurants, Wine, Travel, Opinions

Mourvedre grape variety
Wine glossary

Reviewed By

Sue Dyson and Roger McShane
Country: France

Mourvedre is a red grape variety popular in southern France for making robust red wines with soft tannins. Perhaps the grape reaches its highest expression in the coastal Mediterranean region around the city of Bandol but it is also found widely in the southern Rhone especially in Chateauneuf-du-Pape where it is used widely and the Cotes du Ventoux appellation where it is blended with Grenache, Syrah and, sometimes, Carignan to produce elegant, interesting wines.
In addition to France it is widely grown in Spain where it is known as Monastrell, in California and in Australia where it is sometimes called by its Portugese name of Mataro (due to its association with the making of port).
The grape produces wines that are big, somewhat feral and often with pronounced 'barnyard' aromas. However, their other characteristic is that can age beautifully as anyone who has tried an old Domaine Tempier Bandol or a Chateau Beaucastel Chateauneuf-du-Pape will testify (Bandol wines must comprise at least 50% Mourvedre and Beaucastel use about 70% Mourvedre in their big, powerful wines).
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