Garanoir is a new hybrid grape, a cross between Gamay and Reichensteiner, a white variety found in Germany (and in the UK). It produces immensely powerful dark red wines, with much tannin and is increasingly used in "big" blends.
Garanoir has very smooth tannins, low acidity, has a deep colour, generous fruit perfectly enhanced by a touch of spice, and an incredible complex texture. It is used in blends to bring texture and a certain complex richness to the wine. The variety is often blended with its sibling, Gamaret. Aromatically speaking, Garanoir wines can be strikingly similar to those made from Pinot Noir. Garanoir lacks Pinot Noir's acidity however, so it is best grown in cooler vineyard sites. In cooler conditions, the grapes can ripen slowly and steadily without losing too much acidity.
Garanoir was born in 1970 at the Caudoz research centre in Pully near Lausanne in Switzerland and originally named Pully B-28. It then underwent a few name changes before Garanoir was chosen. It was released in 1990.
Garanoir was developed for cultivation in German Switzerland and is a full sibling of Gamaret, which was intended for the French part of the country. They are fantastic as a blend.
It was the first time I have ordered from Alpine Wines and I just wanted to say that I found the unexpected follow-up call a very nice touch. I am also pleased to report that it was the winning wine for our Austrian evening at our very informal wine club!