Although the red Carignan grape originated in Spain, it has become one of the most widely planted red grapes in France. In the Provence, Rhône, and Languedoc regions, it's mainly used to make inexpensive vin de table wines. It's also widely planted in countries surrounding the Mediterranean— Italy, Israel, and Spain, where it's often used to add color to Rioja wines. At one time, Carignan was the most widely planted red grape varietal in California; it is still cultivated there to make jug wines. Its popularity results from its high yields: Carignan produces more red wine than any other grape variety. The deep purple grape typically has high tannins and alcohol and is capable of producing dark, thick, rich, fruity, spicy reds. Because of its high tannic content, it's usually blended with softer wines such as Cinsaut and Grenache. When made via carbonic maceration (a common practice in the Languedoc-Roussillon region), the resulting wine can have a pleasantly spicy and fruity taste.