Wine Wednesday: GSM

By: Cecily Gamba

Happy Wine Wednesday, everyone! It’s that time of the week again for the next stop on our educational adventure through all things Rhône. This week’s topic: GSM blends.

The world of blending wine is a truly beautiful thing. The process allows winemakers to balance out less desirable characteristics of single varietal wines, thus giving them more control of the resulting flavor profile. Many different varietals contribute wonderful qualities to wines, and when certain varietals are combined, magic happens. One of the best examples of the magic of a blend is in a classic Rhône GSM.

GSM stands for Grenache, Syrah, Mourvèdre. These grapes all have defining characteristics that each bring something unique to the resulting wine. Grenache is typically the largest portion of a Côtes du Rhône style blend, and tends to add fruity, red berry, and baking spice flavors. It is the lightest of the 3 varietals, yet adds a higher alcohol level. Syrah adds a savory component to the wine; imparting dark fruit flavors and an upfront boldness on the palate. The final varietal, Mourvèdre, adds aroma, a deep, lingering finish, and tannin to the final blend.

In terms of pairing with food, a GSM is a great choice because of its versatility. One must try: pairing these wines with Mediterranean spices!

Try it at the girl & the fig!

Donelan, 2014 Cuvée Moriah, Sonoma County

Abbot’s Passage, 2015 Points Unknown, Sonoma Valley

Amapola Creek, 2014 Cuvée Alis, Sonoma Valley