Carnelian is a red grape variety with a unique personality that is grown in both the United States and Australia. It is eveloped in the 1970s as a cross between Grenache and an existing crossing of Carignan and Cabernet Sauvignon.

Colour, Aromas and Taste Profile

Carnelian grapes are a deep purple-red colour with a thick skin that ripens to a full-bodied dark purple. The taste profile is quite bold with a powerful tannic structure, flavours of blackberry, cherry and dark plum and a hint of spice. Aromas of blackberry, blackcurrant, blueberry and vanilla are often present in the wines made from this variety.

Fresh Carnelian grapes on the vine

Regional Features & Food Pairings

Carnelian is mainly grown in the United States and Australia. In the United States, it is grown in California’s Central Valley, as well as Texas and Hawaii. In Australia, it is grown in Margret River. Carnelian is a relatively high-yielding variety which requires careful management in the vineyard to ensure quality. It is resistent to heat, which makes it perfect for warm regions. Carnelian wines tend to be more fruit-forward and full-bodied, with intense aromas and a hint of herbs. Carnelian wines pair well with roasted meats, grilled vegetables, game and rich, creamy sauces.

Foods to pair with Carnelian:

Fun Fact about Carnelian
Carnelian is part of the "Olmo grapes", which are wine and table grapes bred by viticulturist Dr. Harold Olmo.

Top Wines with Carnelian

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