Pin it

So what in the world is a GSM wine? “GSM” is shorthand for a red wine blended from Grenache, Syrah and Mourvedre. Originally from the Rhône valley in the south of France, these wines are known for their bright fruit, extravagant aromas of ripe fruit, dried sage and herbs, and a tight, peppery finish. Fortunately, GSMs are now made in various parts of the world, including the U.S. and right here in Texas. The bad news is that they are not well known and therefore won’t always be on the shelf at your favorite wine store. Another hurdle is that the letters “GSM” will not always appear on the label, so you may have to enlist the help of a sales clerk to find one. It’s worth the trouble. Here are three good examples of GSM-style blends. I have to admit a preference for GSMs from Washington state, but that’s just me. So, happy hunting.

Becker Vineyards Prairie Rotie from Texas
Blended Red – Grenache, Mourvedre and Syrah
Notes: On the nose, dried rose, coriander and earth with hints of toasted vanilla. On the palate, cranberry, dried Bing cherries, clove/allspice with lingering tannins and coffee on the finish.
A Soft Red – Cost: $$$ out of $$$$$

Hahn GSM from Central Coast California
Blended Red – Grenache, Syrah and Mourvedre
Notes: Deep indigo color hints at ripe blackberry aromas and core flavors of dark fruits accentuated by spicy undercurrents. A balance of strong acidity and drying tannins supported by undertones of pepper and blueberries. The dry finish leaves the slightest hint of vanilla on the palate. Grenache brings berry and spice notes while Syrah provides color and tannins and Mourvedre adds acidity and structure.
A Soft Red – Cost: $$ out of $$$$$

Owen Roe Sinister Hand from Columbia Valley
Blended Red – 70 percent Grenache, 26 percent Syrah, 2 percent Mourvedre and 2 percent Counoise
Notes: A bright garnet color and notes of wild strawberries, tayberries, black pepper and red and black currants. Precise acid structure and a ripe black fruit and baked brown earth finish. Savory notes of stewed dark fruits, sweet herbs and a complex earthiness.
A Soft Red – Cost: $$ out of $$$$$

Local oenophile David Dickson has been a wine educator for nearly 30 years. He welcomes questions and suggestions for this column at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Visit his website at to learn more about enjoying wine.



Before you go …

… we’ve got a small favor to ask. More people are reading The Tribune than ever. Advertising revenues across the media  spectrum are falling fast. And unlike many news organizations, we haven’t put up a paywall – we want to keep our journalism as open as we can. So you can see why we need to ask for your help. The Tribune's independent, investigative journalism takes a lot of time, money and hard work to produce. But we do it because we believe our perspective matters – because it might well be your perspective, too. If everyone who reads our reporting, who likes it, helps to support it, our future would be much more secure. Support the only locally owned, locally produced news product in the Lake Houston area.  And thank you!