Grape Encyclopedia: Tempranillo
Perhaps the premier grape in Spain, Tempranillo has existed exclusively in the Iberian Peninsula since 1100 B.C. Rising from obscurity less than 100 years ago, today Tempranillo is the third most planted grape variety in the world with 500 clones of Tempranillo in Spain alone.
Tempranillo grows almost exclusively in Spain and Portugal with 98% of the world’s total vineyards. It is thought that the grape originated in Rioja and Navarra. Tempranillo grows in small quantities in other countries specifically New World regions such as the United States and Australia.
Old World Tempranillo is noted for its cherry and leather flavors as well as it’s smooth finish, while New World Tempranillo tends to have bolder fruit flavors. Typically medium-to-full-bodied, Tempranillo should linger on the palate with balanced acidity and tannins. Tempranillo tends to have a ruby-red color and an ABV of 13-14.5%.
The name Tempranillo translates to “little early one” in Spain due to the grapes’ early ripening time. The grape may also be referred to as Cencibel, Tinto Fino, Tinto del Pais, Tinto de Toro, Tinto Madrid, Ojo de Liebre, or Ull de Llebre in Spain. While the grape is bottled as a single varietal it is more commonly blended with Grenache (known as Garnacha in Spain) and Carignan (known as Mazuela in Spain).
By Empson USA Staff | Jul 2021
Comments are closed