Mourvèdre (Monastrell in its native Spain, Mataro in Australia and California) is a black-skinned variety that has been grown in vineyards all around the western Mediterranean for centuries. Thought to have originated in Spain, it is now grown extensively throughout the Iberian Peninsula, southern France, California and South Australia.
Mourvèdre likes warm, dry climates and has small, thick-skinned berries – the textbook combination for making wines with intense colour and high tannin levels. In fact, it is the variety’s mouth-drying tannins that earned it the French nickname Etrangle-Chien (the dog strangler).
Mourvèdre’s meaty, herby aromas are very distinctive, as are its strong tannins. These qualities make it a potent ingredient for blending, most often with vibrant, rich Grenache and structured spicy Syrah.