Wine-Growing Areas

Grenache Blanc in California

Here is an overview of principal California American Viticultural Areas, (AVAs), the U.S. equivalent of appellations, associated with Grenache Blanc. For a deep dive into specific regions, please visit our Regional Guides.

Grenache Blanc Acreage by County (2021)

(bearing and non-bearing)
(bearing and non-bearing)
Fresno 150 60.70
San Luis Obispo 131 53.01
Kings 123 49.78
Santa Barbara 53 21.44
Sonoma 36 14.57
Monterey 24 9.71
Sacramento 21 8.50
Mendocino 20 8.09
El Dorado 16 6.47
San Joaquin 15 6.07
Other 39 15.78
STATE TOTAL 625 252.93

As with Marsanne and Roussanne, not a lot of Grenache Blanc exists in the Golden State, with plantings in just 21 of California’s 58 counties. However, including not-yet-bearing vines, four times more Grenache Blanc is grown in the Golden State than Marsanne, and more than double the surface area allocated to Roussanne. Grenache Blanc trails only Viognier in white Rhône varieties, but it’s by a lot: four times more Viognier is grown in California than Grenache Blanc.  

While no region really dominates quantitatively, premium expressions of Grenache Blanc are concentrated in two spots: San Luis Obispo (specifically Paso Robles) and Santa Barbara County, both on the Central Coast. Given the viticultural and historical challenges, producers committed to quality are the state’s focus. San Luis Obispo’s Paso Robles, in particular, has a desirable combination of limestone (calcareous) soils conflated with weathered granite, older marine sedimentary rocks, and some volcanic rocks offering the perfect composite for Rhône varieties. The existence of just 142 ha/351 bearing acres of Grenache Blanc currently producing in the ground testifies to the commitment of those that do produce the variety. That said, as of 2021, new plantings of around 106 ha/1,261 acres point to a promising and exciting future.

Grenache Blanc Around the World

France is home to more than two-thirds of the world's acreage of Grenache Blanc. Spain comes in second, with the United States (mostly California) placing third. 

  • France: Languedoc-Roussillon, Southern Rhône Valley (Costières de Nîmes, Luberon, Châteauneuf-du-Pape)
  • Spain: Catalunya (Priorat, Allela, Costers del Segre), Tarragona (Terra Alta), Zaragoza, Rioja
  • The Americas: Chile, other United States (Washington, Oregon)
  • Other countries: Croatia, Macedonia, South Africa, Israel, Australia, Greece, Bulgaria, Cyprus