Definition - What does Picpoul Blanc mean?
Picpoul blanc is a wine grape species from the Vitis vinifera family, originating from Rhône Valley, France. It is one of the 13 white (Picpoul Noir is the red version, also permitted) grapes permitted for blending in the AOC Chateauneuf du Pape. It is also cultivated in the South of France in Languedoc.
It is a grape which thrives in dry, warm climates with cool evenings in order to favor upon the balance of acidity. It can survive in many compositions of soil, but they must be well-drained soil and consist of vital minerals.
WineFrog explains Picpoul Blanc
Picpoul Blanc is a variety with history in the Rhône Valley of France. In Rhône, it is cultivated in a hot, dry climate in soils famed for round pebbles and rocks covering a clay base. This soil holds in the heat of the day, which keeps the grapes warm in the evening. Because of this climate, Picpoul Blanc maintains higher sugar levels, making for higher alcohol and fuller-bodied wines.
In Languedoc, Picpoul Blanc is cultivated in limestone, chalk and gravel. This region boasts a dry, Mediterranean Climate and the soils reflect much of sun and hold in less heat during the day. Fruits of Languedoc will have more acidity and create lighter wines.
Today, Picpoul Blanc is grown in other similar Mediterranean Climates in California, Catalonia (Spain), and high-desert climate, 5,000 feet above sea level in Arizona.