Red Wine From Navarra Spain – Marco Real – Garnacha

Video Wine Review of Marco Real Garnacha

Video Wine Review of Marco Real Garnacha

I’ve had a hard time writing this wine review for several reasons. My opinion of this wine disagrees with both Wine Spectator and Wine Advocate reviews. Now, I don’t mean to suggest that WA and WS are the end-all-be-all of wine information, but it causes me to pause and reflect on the wine. I often hesitate to recommend a wine that isn’t varietally correct, because I know some wine geek out there will blast me for it. However, Robin’s opinion of this wine was identical to mine, so without further ado, lets talk about Marco Real Garnacha from Navarra, Spain.

Garnacha, which is called Grenache when it comes from areas outside of Spain, such as France or the US, is a very widely planted red wine grape. It usually produces wine that has dark berry fruit flavors, and a great backbone of pepper and spice that make it a very enjoyable red wine, in my opinion. It’s a red wine I love on it’s own, or paired with steak, lamb, or cheeses, and have served at dinner parties frequently.  When I was offered the chance to try the Marco Real 2005 Garnacha from Navarra, Spain, I jumped at the opportunity. To find out what I thought of this wine, watch the short video review, then continue on to see my summary of the wine.

Red Wine From Navarra Spain – Marco Real – Garnacha from Matthew Scott Horbund on Vimeo.

As you can see, the issue I had writing this review is is not if this is a good wine. For the price, which is a suggested retail of about $11, it’s an easy drinking, nice red wine. However, if you’re looking for varietally correct, where the dark berries give way to pepper notes on the palate, this is not the wine for you. This is more of a jammy, berry focused wine that is very easy to drink, a nice evening back-porch sipper. I think it would be great with food, and had it with ravioli with a red marinara sauce, and it went very nicely. As a matter of fact, I purchased quite a bit of this wine from Zsazsa and Company, and plan on having it with friends over pizza soon. 

Closeup of Marco Real Garnacha Label

Closeup of Marco Real Garnacha Label

Wine Spectator gave this wine an 86, and Wine Advocate gave it an 88. Both reviewers noted the spice, typical of Garnacha, which I felt was lacking.  Now, you’re asking, “Matt, what does that mean?” It means if you’re looking for a perfect bottle of Garnacha, this isn’t it. I’ll work on finding one for you! However, if you’re looking for an easy drinking red, one to sip alone or with food, then for $11, you can’t go wrong with this wine.  I plan on opening a bottle of this wine over the next few days, and re-tasting it. I also plan on reviewing a slightly more expensive California Grenache, and seeing how the two compare.

I’d love to hear your thoughts! Leave a comment below and let me know if you’ve had Garnacha, or Grenache, lately. If so, what did you like, or not like about it? Have you had the Marco Real, and if so what was your opinion.  I’ll update this post when I re-try the wine with other foods, so check back often.

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4 thoughts on “Red Wine From Navarra Spain – Marco Real – Garnacha

  1. [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Matthew S Horbund and Robin & Matt, Robin & Matt. Robin & Matt said: RT @tweetmeme Red Wine From Navarra Spain – Marco Real – Garnacha (via @mmWine) [...]

  2. Ok, you know me…not the most savvy person when it comes to wines. But oh so willing to learn. I’ve never tried a Garnacha. But it’s on the list to try soon.

    *Sidenote: Your site looks great! And my, haven’t you come a long way since 12seconds?! :-)

  3. A friend brought this wine to our Mardi Gras party Friday night, but I finally opened it tonight and drank it with some of the spicy leftover Jambalaya and Gumbo. Having never had this wine before, I guessed, by the name, that it was a Grenache, but since it didn’t have the typical varietal characteristics (as you noted), I felt compelled to look it up online. Needless to to say, I came across your review, and I must agree with it completely. I think it’s definitely a good value wine, and pairs well with spicy foods (or pizza). I wouldn’t hesitate to serve this to my friends, regardless of what their level of wine appreciation. It’s a nice choice!

  4. Lisa -
    Chances are, the fact that it was more round and fruity was a good thing! That probably helped it pair with the spicy Jambalaya and Gumbo. Though a varietally correct garnacha could work as well, I personally prefer round and fruity reds with my spicy foods.

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