Carignan

Carignan

Carignan is actually a Spanish grape variety called Mazuelo grown in northeast Spain, which is high in tannins and acidity.   It is an extremely old variety known for being highly productive which needs the Mediterranean heat to ripen fully.  It also has high tannin content, high acidity and lots of colour.  It can be a little bitter and tough if not handled carefully.   It used to be planted extensively in Languedoc-Roussillon and Provence but is gradually being replaced by more nobler varieties such as Syrah and Grenache.   

Carignan is still planted on the island of Sardegna (where it is known as Bovale Grande), in Lazio in Italy and is authorized in the Rioja blend.   Old bush vines of Carignan have been used to make a few top varietal wines in Spain and in California, old Carignan is prized by Ridge in their blends.  However the most promising Carignan in the New World is found in the Maule region of Chile. 

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