Petit Verdot

Petit Verdot

Petit Verdot is a red wine grape variety that originated in the Bordeaux region of France. It is known for its deep color, high tannins, and intense flavors, making it an integral component in Bordeaux blends. However, it is typically used in smaller quantities due to its challenging nature to ripen fully.

The name "Petit Verdot" translates to "little green" in French, referring to its late ripening tendencies. This grape variety is recognized for its dark, thick-skinned berries, which contribute to the wine's deep hue. The small berries also have a high skin-to-juice ratio, resulting in more concentrated flavors and robust tannins.

The primary reason for the limited planting of Petit Verdot is its late-ripening nature. It requires a warm climate with a long growing season to fully mature. This contributes to its difficulty in ripening in cooler regions, making it more commonly found in warmer climates such as California, Spain, and Australia.

When included in Bordeaux blends, Petit Verdot adds structure, color, and complexity. It often takes a supporting role, providing backbone and intensity to the final wine. Its high tannin content also contributes to the age-worthiness of these wines.

Outside of Bordeaux, Petit Verdot is increasingly being produced as a varietal wine, highlighting its unique characteristics. These wines exhibit vibrant dark fruit flavors of blackberry and plum, complemented by earthy undertones and notes of violet and spice. With its full-bodied profile and firm tannins, Petit Verdot wines tend to benefit from aging in oak barrels, adding further complexity and softening the tannins.

Petit Verdot is a grape variety that is often underappreciated due to its limited availability and its significant contribution to blends rather than being a standalone variety. However, when given the opportunity to shine independently, Petit Verdot exhibits its capacity for producing bold and structured wines that are compelling and delicious.

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