Mourvedre Wine Variety in Australia

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Mourvedre is a Spanish and Rhone variety which is becoming more popular in Australia, especially in the Barossa Valley and McLaren Vale, after a decline in the 1980s. In a way its fortunes have mirrored those of Grenache, a common blending partner.

In Spain the variety is known as Monastrell. As the origin of the grape is most likely Spanish, and there is much more grown in Spain perhaps Monastrell could be regarded as the more correct name. It was also known as Mataro in Australia and in California. Occasionally you will still find wines with that name on the label. To add to the confusion the variety was also formerly known in Australia as Esparte.

This page recently updated to include new wineries listed in
James Halliday's Wine Companion 2014

In France it is used a part of the blended red wines in the Southern Rhone, often playing a supporting role to Grenache. The Mourvedre grape is also important in Provence, where it is used to make well structured roses, as well as serious reds, especially in the Appellation of Bandol.

It is widely grown in Spain under the name of Monastrell. It is not so highly regarded in Spain, its main role is to produce wines with high alcohol and tannin levels.

Mourvedre in Australia

The most common use in Australia is in the increasingly popular Grenache, Shiraz Mourvedre (GSM) blends. These wines hark back to the 1960s when Australian dry red wine was labeled as claret and we weren't so fussy about what was on the label.

Before the 1980s Mourvedre was sometimes blended with Cabernet Sauvignon to make Cabernet Mataro but these blends are largely replaced by Cabernet Merlot these days.

Mourvedre is used in Australia mainly as a blending partner with Shiraz and Grenache, hence the increasingly popular 'GSM' blends. A significant number of wineries make other blends using this variety. It adds a certain rustic flavour, palate length and some tannic structure to the wines. Varietal Mourvèdre and many blends age well, developing farmyard or meaty aromas.

A couple of straight varietal Mourvedre wines deserve special mention. Hewitson Old Garden Mourvedre is made from the fruit of 150-year-old vines in the Barossa Valley. Cascabel in the McLaren Vale produce a wine from this variety under the name of its Spanish synonym of Monastrell, reflecting winemaker Susana Fernandez's Spanish heritage.

Australian Wineries Using Mourvedre

If I have missed any you can leave a note in the comments box below

A Retief Southern New South Wales Zone | Altamont Wine Studio Adelaide hills | Andrew Peace Wines Swan Hill | Angelicus Geographe | Annie's Lane Clare Valley | Arakoon McLaren Vale | Arimia Margaret River Margaret River | Atlas Wines Clare Valley | Atze's Corner Wines Barossa Valley | B3 Wines Barossa Valley | Balthazar Barossa Valley | Banderra Estate Central Ranges Zone | Barristers Block Adelaide Hills | Belalie Bend Southern Flinders Region | Bella Ridge Estate Swan District | Blackbilly McLaren Vale | Blue Rock Eden Valley | Boireann Granite Belt | Brash Higgins McLaren Vale | Broken River Vineyards Goulburn Valley | Bullers Beverford Swan Hill | Burge Family Winemakers Barossa Valley | Canonbah Bridge Western Plains | Cape Barren Wines McLaren Vale | Cape Mentelle Margaret River | Carpenteri Vineyards Swan Hill | Cascabel McLaren Vale | Chapel Hill McLaren Vale | Chaperon Wines Bendigo | Charles Cimicky Barossa Valley | Charles Melton Barossa Valley | Chateau Pato Hunter Valley | Chateau Tanunda Barossa Valley | Churchview Estate Margaret River | Clancy's of Conargo Riverina | Clancy Fuller Barossa Valley | Claymore Wines Clare Valley | Clonakilla Canberra | Colonial Estate Barossa Valley | Connor Park Bendigo | Cradle of Hills McLaren Vale | Currency Creek Currency Creek | D'Arenberg McLaren Vale | Deisen Barossa Valley | Di Fabio Estate McLaren Vale | Diggers Bluff Barossa Valley | Diloreto Wines Adelaide Plains | Disaster Bay Wines South Coast Zone | Domain Barossa Barossa Valley | Drakesbrook Wines Peel | Ducks in a Row McLaren Vale | Echelon McLaren Vale | Eperosa Barossa Valley | Farosa Estate Adelaide Plains | G Pattriti & Co McLaren Vale | Galli Estate Sunbury | Geoff Merrill McLaren Vale | Gibson Barossavale Barossa Valley | Gilligan McLaren Vale | Gomersal Wines Barossa Valley | Gomersal Wines Barossa Valley | Grant Burge Barossa Valley | Greenstone Vineyard Heathcote | Hamiltons Ewell Vineyards Barossa Valley | Hanging Rock Winery Macedon Ranges | Happs Margaret River | Head in the Clouds McLaren Vale | Henschke Eden Valley | Hewitson Barossa Valley | Hutton Vale Eden Valley | Izway Wines Barossa Valley | Jacobs Creek Barossa Valley | John Duval Wines Barossa Valley | Kabminye Wines Barossa Valley | Kaesler Barossa Valley | Kalleske Wines Barossa Valley | Kay Bros Amery McLaren Vale | Kellermeister Wines Barossa Valley | Kennedy Heathcote | Kilikanoon Clare Valley | Kirrihill Estates Clare Valley | Koltz McLaren Vale | Kurtz Family Vineyards Barossa Valley | Lambert Estate Barossa Valley | Landhaus Estate Barossa Valley | Langmeil Barossa Valley | Lanz Vineyards Barossa Valley | Lanzthomson Wines Barossa Valley | Larry Cherubino Margaret River | Lillian Pemberton | Lou Miranda Estate Barossa Valley | Magpie Estate Barossa Valley | Mansfield Wines Mudgee | Marienberg McLaren Vale | Marius Wines McLaren Vale | Massena Wines Barossa Valley | Massey Wines McLaren Vale | Maverick Wines Barossa Valley | McHenry Hohnen Margaret River | McPherson Wines Nagambie Lakes | McWilliams Riverina | Mitchell Clare Valley | Mitchelton Nagambie Lakes | Morgan Simpson Wines McLaren Vale | Mount Appallan Vineyards South Burnett | Mount Camel Ridge Estate Heathcote | Mt Billy Southern Fleurieu | Murray Street Vineyard Barossa Valley | Muster Wine Company Barossa Valley | Myattsfield Vineyard and Winery Perth Hills | New Glory Goulburn Valley | Noble Red Heathcote | O'Donohue's Find Riverland | Oak Dale Wines Swan Hill | Olssens of Watervale Clare Valley | Organic Vignerons Australia Riverland | Paradine Estate Queensland Zone | Paul Nelson Wines Mount Barker | Pennyfield Wines Riverland | Pepperilly Estate Wines Geographe | Peter Lehmann Barossa Valley | Phoenix Estate Clare Valley | Pikes Clare Valley | Purple Hands Wines Barossa Valley | Pyramid Gold Bendigo | Pyramids Road Wines Granite Belt | RBJ Barossa Valley | Red Edge Heathcote | Redbox Perricoota Perricoota | Reedy Creek Northern Slopes Zone | Ridgemill Estate Granite Belt | Rockford Barossa Valley | Roehr Barossa Valley | Rolf Binder Barossa Valley | Rosemount McLaren Vale | Rowsley Fault Vineyards Geelong | Rudderless Wines McLaren Vale | Ruggabellus Barossa Valley | Rusden Wines Barossa Valley | Rutherglen Estates Rutherglen | Saltram Barossa Valley | Sarsfield Estate Gippsland | Schild Estate Wines Barossa Valley | Schulz Vignerons Barossa Valley | Scorpiiion Barossa Valley | Serafino Wines McLaren Vale | Seraph's Crossing Clare Valley | Shobbrook Wines Barossa Valley | Sieber Road Wines Barossa Valley | Silver Wings Winemaking Goulburn Valley | Silverfox Wines Perricoota | Sirromet Queensland Coastal | Smallfry Wines Barossa Valley | Smidge Wines Langhorne Creek | Sons of Eden Barossa Valley | Soul Growers Barossa Valley | Spinifex Barossa Valley | Spook Hill Wines Riverland | Springs Hill Vineyard Fleurieu Zone | St Annes Vineyards Perricoota | St Hallett Barossa Valley | Swan Valley Wines Swan Valley | Syrahmi Heathcote | Tahbilk Nagambie Lakes | Tallarook Wines Upper Goulburn | Taltarni Pyrenees | TeAro Barossa Valley | Tellurian Heathcote | Terra Felix Upper Goulburn | Teusner Barossa Valley | The Old Faithful Estate McLaren Vale | The Ritual Peel | Tim Smith Wines Barossa Valley | Tin Shed Wines Eden Valley | Tomfoolery Barossa Valley | Torambre Wines Riverland | Torbreck Vintners Barossa Valley | Turkey Flat Vineyards Barossa Valley | Two Hands Barrosa | Valhalla Wines Rutherglen | Veronique Barossa Valley | Vintara Rutherglen | Wakefield Estate Clare Valley | Wallington Wines Cowra | Wendouree Clare Valley | Whistler Wines Barossa Valley | Wirra Wirra McLaren Vale | Woods Crampton Barossa Valley | Yaldara Barossa Valley | Yalumba Wine Company Barossa Valley | Yangarra Estate McLaren Vale | Yelland and Papps Barossa Valley | Z Wines Barossa Valley | Zitta Wines Barossa Valley | Zonte's Footstep Langhorne Creek

Mourvedre and Food Pairing

Mourvedre red wines are earthy and rustic. They go well with duck, squab or red meat based stews, or you could try them with Provencal vegetable dishes.

GSM wines are just the thing to accompany your Sunday roast lamb. The soft, fruit sweet middle palate will complement the meat without overpowering it.

Mourvedre based rose wines go well with any dishes that have been kissed by the Mediterranean sun, say ratatouille or frito misto, mixed fried seafood. Why not enjoy a chilled bottle of Mourvedre Rose with some tapenade made with Darby's Famous Tapenade Recipe

In his book Daring Pairings, Evan Goldstein includes a description of Mourvedre, along with 18 other alternative varieties. He suggests enjoying a bottle of Mourvedre with a dish of BBQ turkey skewers and caramelised sage onions.

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