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Bobal is a dark-skinned wine grape variety native to Utiel-Requena in southeast Spain. It is one of Spain's most planted grape varieties behind Tempranillo and Airén. Bobal grapes have long been used as a minor blending partner to the region's more glamorous grape varieties. Now, more producers are turning towards varietal Bobal wines, which are dense and chewy with characters of chocolate and dried berries. Bobal is well-suited to the dry, continental landscape of Utiel-Requena, where it is permitted in the wines of Valencia, Manchuela, Alicante, and Murcia DOs. Outside Spain, Bobal is grown in small amounts in the Roussillon region of France. The grape's name may be derived from the Latin word Bovale, meaning bull, referring to the resemblance of the shape of the grape bunches to a bull’s head. It is also used to make deeply colored rosé wines and has even been used to produce sparkling wine. Bobal's thick skins have a high amount of anthocyanins, giving the wine a deep, intense color as well as a good tannic structure.
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