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Wine Glossary

Definition: Carmenère

[car-men-EHR] Sometimes called Bordeaux's sixth red-grape variety (along with Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Malbec, Merlot and Petit Verdot). Although it had a significant presence in Bordeaux in the past, it was phased out in the twentieth century. However, it turns out that many "Merlot" vines growing in Chile are really Carmenère, and the Chileans are now bottling varietal wines from this grape. When yields are reduced and grapes fully ripened, Carmenère can produce full-bodied, full-flavored, deeply colored wines that combine some of the best qualities of Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. Although Chile is currently the most noted for Carmenère wines, there's evidence that there may be significant vineyards of Carmenère in northern Italy that have previously been identified as Cabernet Franc.

Source: Answers.com; Wine Lover's Companion - R & S Herbst

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