Bobal is an emerging high quality Spanish red wine grape variety. It boasts high levels of anthocyanins and is capable thus, of deeply coloured wines with substantial structure. Bobal is prominent throughout the south of Spain. It is readily planted from Valencia onwards, as its vineyards stretch toward Andalucia, while incorporating the newly fashionable zones of Alicante, Utiel-Requena, Jumilla, Yecla and Bullas, in the south-eastern corner of the country.
Bobal's strong colour and flavours of saturated, dark skinned fruits including black cherry, fig and extremely ripe plums, lend to the production of grape concentrate, often used to bolster wines from lesser years and/or cooler regions with less potent grape varieties. This role has given Bobal a reputation as a work horse variety, capable of rough and strongly flavoured bulk wines. It is planted extensively as a result, with more than 90,000 hectares.
However, high quality wines from the likes of producers such as Mustiguillo are shedding a new light on Bobal and its potential for complex, rather than simple wines. The likes of Mustiguillo are managing to fashion silky and suave reds from higher altitude vineyards in Utiel-Requena.
This is because Bobal imbues its wines with a sprightly freshness, retaining higher levels of natural acidity than its more ferruginous southern counterpart, Mourvedre, or Monastrell as it is known locally. This allows for eminent pleasure, giving Bobal a bright commercial future indeed.