While Bordeaux and Burgundy in France get most of the attention from wine aficionados, there are some good wines and great bargains to be found in the Languedoc-Roussillon coastal region in Southern France.
Les Vignerons de Florensac (The Winemakers of Florensac) is composed of some 260 winemakers and it’s this territory – an ancient one – where one of my favorite Picpoul de Pinets is made. It’s long been one of my go-to white wines from France, and I especially like the wallet-friendly price: here in Utah it sells for $12.99 per bottle.
The wine is made from 100% Piquepoul grapes, and why the grape varietal is spelled different from the wine is a mystery to me. Piquepoul grapes come in both red and white varieties and this Picpoul de Pinet is made, of course, with white (blanc) grapes.
Unscrew the cap, pour a glass of Picpoul de Pinet, and you’ll encounter citrus aromas along with those of fruits such as pear and apple with a bit a grapefruit. I was told once that Picpoul translates as “lip stinger,” which would seem appropriate since this is a bone dry, acidic wine – super crisp and tangy. It is also quite earthy, with mineral undertones that make Florensac Picpoul de Pinet a good partner for oysters, mussels, clams and such. It’s also an excellent picnic wine. So, pick a peck of Picpoul.
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Originally trained as an anthropologist, Ted Scheffler is a seasoned food, wine & travel writer based in Utah. He loves cooking, skiing, and spends an inordinate amount of time tending to his ever-growing herd of guitars and amplifiers.
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