Mourvèdre Is Mainly Famous in Spain
Mourvèdre is famous and popular especially in Spanish wines. In the particular hot regions, the grape variety can thrive magnificently, whilst the winemakers always have to ensure low laying wine slopes. High wine slopes hinder Mourvèdre in its growth. At ideal conditions, the grape rewards with dark and strong red wines, and one or more rosés have also already caused a sensation. With over 60.000 hectares of cultivated area, Spain still belongs to one of the biggest producers for Mourvèdre wines worldwide. Also, the grape variety originates from Spain; it is safe to say the town Murviedro has been the namesake.
Mourvèdre Is an Important Element of the Rhône Blend
Mourvèdre is not only known amongst Spanish winemakers. French wine growers have rediscovered the grape; admittedly though, it has never disappeared completely. Before the two great wine catastrophes mildew and vine pest in the middle of the 19th century, large parts of France had been cultivated with it. In favour of more robust vines, many winemakers have removed it from their planning. Nevertheless, in exquisite Rhône Blends, the wine lover has always found parts of Mourvèdre and can still find them. Especially in vintages when the summer was particularly hot, this grape variety made for excellent cuvees which have already won numerous international awards. Is a Rhône Blend constituted of a great part of Mourvèdre then the gourmet is likely to have a ‘hot’ vintage.
The Grape Characteristics of Mourvèdre
Due to the nature of the vines, French winemakers in cooler climates face more difficulties than their Spanish colleagues. The grape is robust regarding frost as it buds late, yet Mourvèdre also ripens quite late. Long and warm summer days are required in order for the grape’s full potential to develop. In the warmer areas, mildew infestation is also less likely to happen.
Mourvèdre in South Africa
Mourvèdre requires a high alcohol content to develop its taste of blackcurrant and subtle herbal notes fully. South Africa, with its warm climate and sufficient sun, cannot be better suited to produce such red as well as white wines. Not least because of this, Mourvèdre is an integral part of the South African viniculture. Although grape varieties such as Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Shiraz or Pinotage still dominate, Mourvèdre can be found in numerous first class cuvees, not only in small parts.