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Hondarribi Beltza

The red grape variety comes from Spain. The name derives from the city of Hondarribia in the northeast of the Spanish Basque Country (País Vasco), beltza = black. Synonyms are Chacolí, Courbu Noir Faux, Cruchen Nègre, Hondarrabi Beltza, Kurixketu Beltza, Ondarrabi Beltza, Ondarribi Beltza, Txakoli, Txakoli Noir, Verde Matza and Xerratu Beltza. It must not be confused with Cabernet Franc or Courbu Noir, despite the fact that synonyms or morphological similarities appear to indicate this. The Chacolí or Txakoli variety, sometimes referred to as independent, is identical to Hondarribi Beltza.

According to DNA analyses carried out in 2009, there is a parent-progenitor relationship between Hondarribi Beltza and Cabernet Franc. Since both varieties are also grown in the Basque DO area Chacolí in a mixed set, frequent confusions are obvious. A natural cross between Fer Servadou and Hondarribi Beltza has resulted in the Gros Cabernet variety. Hondarribi Beltza produces acid- and alcohol-rich red and rosé wines reminiscent of Cabernet Franc. It is cultivated in Spain on 53 hectares of vineyards. There is a tiny stand of half a hectare in Chile (Kym Anderson statistics).

Source: Wine Grapes / J. Robinson, J. Harding, J. Vouillamoz / Penguin Books Ltd. 2012

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