Carignan {kair-in-yan} is a black grape variety, which originally comes from the North-East Spain. The name originated from Mazuelo de Muñó, a village located in the province of Burgos region of Castilla y León. A known synonym of Mazuelo is Cariñena  (Carignan in French, Carignano in Italian and Carignane in America), the name originated from a town near Zaragoza called Cariñena. DNA profiling has confirmed that Cariñena and Mazuelo- or Mazuela in Rioja-are identical (Martin et al.2003).

Carignan ideal climate is warm dry weather, were the grape can reach high-acidity, high yielding, color and high tannins. Wines made from 100% Carignan are rare, but the grapes are recognized since they are blended into the most famous wines from La Rioja.

In Spain Mazuelo production is less planted than in France, although there are know plantations in La Rioja, and Catalunya were is known as Samsó. In France Carignan is widely planted all over the southeast regions of Gard, Pyrenees-Orientales, Var and Vaucluse.

Mazuelo/Carignan principal synonyms: Bobale di Spagna, Bovale Grande, Bovale Mannu, Carignan Noir, Carignane, Carignano, Cariñena.

Popular blends: Carignan-Grenache-Syrah, Carignan-Cinsault-Grenache.

Organic, old vine Carignan being harvested at Domaine Sainte Croix

Carignan harvest at Domaine Sainte Croix


What does old vine Carignan taste like? In this video from Ask a Winemaker, Jon Bowen of Doamine Sainte Croix in Corbieres talks about older vines and the natural acidity that Carignan can contain.







The depth of character that comes from these very old vines lends to a wine that more than amply stands on its own. Like previous vintages this wine shows dark ripe fruits on the nose and soft tannins, but with more concentration due to the extremely low yield of one ton per acre.

Sourced from Porter Creek Vineyards



Color of grape Black
Species Vitis Vinifera
Synonyms  Axina de Spagna, Babonenc, Babounenc,
Origin  Spain
Most common in  Spain,Italy
Phonetic pronunciation  karin-yan


Red wine: the rise in popularity of the carignan grape

The much-maligned carignan grape is being re-evaluated by the growers of the Languedoc, and further afield. Sourced from The Telegraph

Reference used: Robinson, J., Harding, J. and Vouillamoz, J. 2012. Wine grapes. New York: Ecco.