The ultimate A-Z of grapes: G

The ultimate A-Z of grapes: G


A red wine grape that is grown in southern Italy, primarily around Calabria. The grape is of Greek origins and is thought to have been introduced to southern Italy around the same time as the Aglianico vine. The grape produces wine that is full-bodied, high in alcohol and tannins with a need for considerable time in the bottle for it to soften in character. It is sometimes blended with up to 10% white wine.


Gamay is a purple-colored grape variety used to make red wines, mainly in Beaujolais. Gamay-based wines are typically light bodied and fruity. Wines meant for immediate consumption are typically made using carbonic maceration which gives the wines tropical flavors and aromas – reminiscent of bananas


Garganega is a variety of white wine grape widely grown in the Veneto region of North East Italy, particularly in the provinces of Verona and Vicenza.

 It forms the basis of the well-known white wine Soave (along with up to 30% of Trebbiano) and is also a major portion of the blend used to make Gambellara. At its best this grape will give a good, rather delicate, wine laden with aromatic hints of lemon and almonds.

Garnacha or Grenache.

A high yielding grape. It is the most widely grown black grape in Spain, particularly in La Rioja, Madrid, Navarre, Tarragona, Teruel, Toledo and Zaragoza. It is considered a main variety in quite a few Spanish regions. Also known as Aragón, Aragonés, Garnache, Grenache and Lladoner.


Gewürztraminer wines are white and usually off-dry, with a flamboyant bouquet of lychees. Dry Gewürztraminers may also have aromas of roses, passion fruit and floral notes. It is not uncommon to notice some spritz (fine bubbles on the inside of the glass).

Its aromatic flavours make Gewürztraminer one of the few wines that is suitable for drinking with Asian cuisine. Alsace could be said to be its true home, where it is the second most planted grape variety and the one most characteristic of the region.


A high quality, very aromatic grape. Native to Galicia, new planting has been encouraged in the last few years, especially in Valdeorras DO. It is considered a main variety in the Valdeorras and Bierzo DOs.


Graciano is a Spanish red wine grape that is grown primarily in La Rioja, along with Tempranillo. The vine produces a low yield of delicately scented grape that are normally harvested in late October. The wine that this grape produces is characterized by its deep red color, strong aroma and ability to age well. It has been suggested by recent studies that ‘Monastrell’, formerly thought to be a Spanish synonym for Mourvedre, is in fact Graciano.


Grechetto is an Italian wine grape of Greek origins. The grape is planted throughout central Italy, particularly in the Umbria region where it is used in Orvieto (DOC) wine. It is primarily a blending grape, though some varietal wine is also produced. Grechetto is commonly blended with Chardonnay, Malvasia, Trebbiano and Verdello.


Grenache (in Spanish, Garnacha, in Catalan, Garnatxa) is probably the most widely planted variety of red wine grape in the world. It ripens late, so needs hot, dry conditions such as those found in Spain and in the south of France.

It is generally spicy, berry-flavoured and soft on the palate with a relatively high alcohol content. It tends to lack acid, tannin and colour, and is usually blended with other varieties such as Syrah, Carignan and Cinsault.

Grenache is the dominant variety in most Southern Rhône wines, especially in Châteauneuf-du-Pape where it is typically over 80% of the blend. In Australia it is typically blended in “GSM” blends with Syrah and Mourvèdre. Grenache is also used to make rosé wines in France and Spain.

Grenache Blanc

Grenache Blanc, as the name suggests, is a variety of white wine grape that is related to the red grape Grenache. It is mostly found in Rhône wine blends and in northeast Spain. Its wines are characterised by high alcohol and low acidity, with citrus and or herbaceous notes. It can contribute flavor and length to blends, particularly with Roussanne. Up to 10% Grenache blanc is permitted to be included in the red wines of the Côtes du Rhône Villages.


Grignolino is a purple grape variety commonly grown in the Piemont region of Italy. It makes light red wines and rosés with a very fruity aroma and strong acid and tannins.


Grillo, also known as Riddu, is a white grape variety which withstands high temperatures and is widely used in Sicilian wine-making and, in particular, for Marsala.

Gros Menseng

Gros Manseng is a white grape variation of Manseng that produces dry wines in the Jurançon and Béarn regions of Southwest France. Gros Manseng does has the potential to produce intensely flavored wines with high acidity, apricot and quince fruit along with spicy and floral notes.

Grüner Veltliner

Grüner Veltliner or GrüVee is a variety of white wine grape widely grown primarily in Austria and widely also in the Czech Republic, and a few spots in New Zealand. It has a reputation of being a particularly food-friendly wine. Grüner Veltliner accounts for about 35% of all vineyards in Austria, almost all of it being grown in the northeast of the country.

It can produce a very pure, minerally wine capable of long ageing, that stands comparison with some of the great wines of the world. In contrast, it can also produce a spicy, peppery character, which can also be aged.