Forcallat tinta is a red Spanish wine grape variety that is native to the Castile-La Mancha region of central Spain. The grape tends to produce pale-colored wines and is most often used as a minor blending component in Vino de la Tierra (VdlT) wines. DNA profiling conducted in the early 21st century determined that the white berried Forcallat blanca grape is a distinct variety and not a color mutation of Forcallat tinta.
Forcallat tinta is a late-ripening grape variety that is often one of the last varieties to be harvested in a growing season. The vine can be very vigorous, producing a large canopy that needs to be kept in check by the vineyard manager or else quality development of the grape clusters can suffer.
Relationship with other grapes
Forcallat tinta shares several synonyms with other grape varieties including the Cava wine grape Macabeo and the numerous other varieties that have been known under the synonym Verdal including Verdejo and Palomino. Forcallat blanca grape that is often confused for the white Spanish wine grape Airén was once thought to be a color mutation of Forcallat tinta but DNA profiling has shown that the two are actually distinct varieties.
In 2008 there were 930 hectares (2,300 acres) of Forcallat tinta planted in Spain, mostly in the provinces of Murcia and Valencia. It is an authorized grape in the VdlT wines of Abanilla, Campo de Cartagena and El Terrerazo.
Over the years, Forcallat tintao has been known under a variety of synonyms including: Alcabril di Gualadin (in the province of León), Alibril, Forcala, Forcalla, Forcalla negra, Forcalla noire, Forcalla Prieta, Macabeo, Macabeu, Verdal (in the province of Ourense), Verdalejo (in Murcia) and Verdalla (in the Canary Islands).