Every Day is Grenache Day at Unti

  We have taken Grenache seriously around here since 1998, when we planted 3 acres of Grenache Noir from the best three clones available at that time. My love affair with Grenache began many years prior to us planting it, around the same time I learned of this quirky band called Talking Heads. Back then,  even the most prestigious of Southern Rhône wines, Châteauneuf-du-Pape was quite affordable. Others, such as Gigondas, Vacqueyras, Rasteau, Sablet (labelled as 'Côtes du Rhône Villages' back then) were downright cheap. So it was easier on a college boy's wallet to drink Rhône, compared to Burgundy, Bordeaux or Napa/Sonoma Cabernet. Well, deservedly, neither Grenache nor the T-Heads and David Byrne flies under the radar anymore. Most grower/producer CDP's start at $50 and vineyard designate or "luxury cuvées" can sell for $200 a bottle. Heck Gigondas, my not-so-dirty-little-secret, sells for $30 to $50. A part of me "Can't seem to face up to the facts" when I realize that prices aren't the"same as it ever was."  So while it might cost me a little more to drink my favorite Rhône wines, as a California producer, it represents a golden opportunity. Since 1998, we have learned that making high-quality Grenache takes time and effort, which translates to increased costs.  If you plant good clones of Grenache, and limit the vines' crop yield, our California climate allows us to make compelling, expressive and complex wine.  Wines you can easily compare to my beloved Châteauneuf-du-Pape or Gigondas. But these type of wines are going to sell for more than $25 a bottle, which is why the current market for high quality Rhône wine is a good thing. So, as we prepare to harvest some of the best looking Grenache fruit we have ever seen this weekend (a few weeks early I might add), let's celebrate the fact that as Byrne says, "This must be the place" for Grenache. MJU

2 responses to “Every Day is Grenache Day at Unti”

  1. Jonathan

    This is the anthem that wakes me up every morning . . . . keep it playing

  2. Danae Blythe

    We will!

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