Campo de Borja Demoninación de Origen is in the northwestern region of Aragon near the city of Zaragoza, about half way between the Atlantic and the Mediterranean. From an agricultural standpoint, it is a transitional zone between the Iberian mountains and the Ebro river plains. The climate is cold and dry in the winter, and hot and dry in the summer, making for challenging farming. Vineyards are planted on plateaus and mountainsides as high as 1,800 feet above sea level, and the appellation’s soil has a high lime content. Nearly 17,000 vineyard acres are included in the appellation. The traditional grape grown here is Garnacha, or Grenache. Other grapes authorized in the DO are Tempranillo, Mazuela, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Syrah, Macabeo and Moscatel. Wine grapes were likely brought to the area by the Romans, and were certainly cultivated by the Cistercian monks during the Middle Ages. After phylloxera killed most of the vines in the 19th centuries, Cistercian monks replanted the area. The appellation denomination as awarded in 1980. Once known for producing grapes that went to bulk winemaking – and thus dismissed as an appellation of little importance to wine connoisseurs -- the region today is enjoying a new reputation as home to some of Spain’s most acclaimed new wineries.
One of the most popular red varieties planted, it ripens late and prefers hot dry climates. It probably originated in Spain, where it is still widely grown. Grenache is best known for its use in Southern Rhone wines, including those of Chateauneuf-du-Pape.