Mencia

Common synonyms: Cabernet, Jaen (Portugal), Loureiro tinto, Médoc, Mencía pajaral, Mencía pequeña, Negra, Negro

Parentage of the grape: As the list of synonyms indicates, it was thought for a long time that Mencia was related to Cabernet Franc. However, it was proven in 2003 that this is not the case.

History of the grape: Mencia is native to northwestern Spain and was once thought to be a clone of Cabernet Franc that was brought there  by pilgrims traveling along the Camino de Santiago. This is not the case. Perhaps its roots are really in Portugal, where it is known as Jaen.

Characteristics of the grape: red and dark berry fruit, occasional vegetal character, can be savory, with good acidity and tannin.

Regions where the grape currently is important: Ribeira Sacra, Bierzo, and Valdeorras

Type or types of wines the grape produces: The Mencias of Ribeira Sacra are lighter, brighter, fresher, and often more mineral-driven. The grape thrives on the steep Read more »

Mentor for Mencia Wines

Etty Lewensztain

I'm the owner of Plonk Wine Merchants, an interactive online wine shop that operates the Plonk Wine Club and specializes in top notch, small production, and off-the-beaten-path wines from around the globe for under $30!

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Mencia on Snooth

  • Dominio de Tares Bierzo Cepas Viejas 2004

    Snoothrank:

    Less inky than it's big brother Bembibre, this wine is a sexy little number that shows rich spice on the nose and pure cherry fruit. Oak is present but not the main focus in this wine. Time softens this wine just enough to make the sultry fruit flow over your tongue and it beigns then to reveal mineral like spices, with hints of clove, cinnamon ... Read More

    Wine review by ryanopaz


  • Dominio de Tares Bembibre Mencia Spain Bierzo Dominio de Tares Spain 2004

    Snoothrank:

    Very dark adn inky in color. The nose at first is very tight and concentrated with big notes of black pepper and rich earth. Slowly and after much time this begins to turn to dark berries, chocolate, clove, anise and more. In the mouth this is a big wine with hits of spice and tannin that seems to leave my tongue reeling. With time though this g... Read More

    Wine review by ryanopaz


  • Dominio de Tares Bierzo Baltos 2005

    Snoothrank:

    Deep dark color with thick legs. The nose is smokey minerals and rich paste like black fruits. Raw meat and dark pepper ladden black cherry. In the mouth on first sip I see medium tannins and a high acidity that leaves the mouth with a dry finish and chalky texture. Rich and layered with dark cherry notes, black berry and charcoal notes. Really ... Read More

    Wine review by ryanopaz


  • Dominio de Tares Mencía Bierzo Baltos 2001

    Snoothrank:

    Drink now, fading quick. The wine is light and pleasant in the mouth with a nice mouthfeel. Flavors of mixed spices, and earth along with a cranberry/ cherry backbone. Not a bad wine but I'm glad don't have any others. 3/5 [NR] Read More

    Wine review by ryanopaz


  • Agribergidum Bierzo Fructus 2005

    Snoothrank:

    Maroonish Red in color. The nose shows rich fruit with earthy anise and graham cracker. Good acidity with some tannin presence. The palate is cherry, pepper, earth and raspberry. A bit hollow on the finish but at the very end the spiciness lingers. 3/5 [NR] Read More

    Wine review by ryanopaz


  • Adega Mondelo Ribeira Sacra Porvide Men Ia 2004

    Snoothrank:

    Dark reddish color. Nose shows raspberry, black pepper, wet earth, and gingerbread. Medium acid and firm tannins fill the mouth. In the mouth dark earth, pepper and rich fruit all mingle. Really a nice example of the power this grape has. 3/5 [NR] Read More

    Wine review by ryanopaz


  • Bodegas Peique Bierzo Peique 2004

    Snoothrank:

    Bright red in color. Cherry nose with light smoke and anise spice. Med bosy with big tannins that need to calm down a bit. The fruit is showing light but I think this wine might come around with some time open or laying down. Definately concentrated. c5a11t12o5 [83] Read More

    Wine review by ryanopaz


  • Señorio de Los Arcos Sl Bierzo Dobiñon 2002

    Snoothrank:

    Deep reddish marroon. Herbal nose with apple, light wood and raspberry aromas. Med to heavey in the mouth with cherry, raspberry, medium tannins and a strong acid that helps to balance out the flavors nicely. c5a11t15o6 [87] Read More

    Wine review by ryanopaz


  • Dominio de Tares Mencía Bierzo Baltos 2001

    Snoothrank:

    Deep ruby purple color. Clean nose with anise, mint a bit of earth. Under it all I catch a faint wiff of bacon fat and deep berry aromas, seems a bit wound up. Medium weight in the mouth at first with a racy acidity and a tannic presence on the finish. Rich flavors of earth, anise, blackberries though it seems a bit too tight and might benefit f... Read More

    Wine review by ryanopaz


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