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The Tablas Creek Vineyard 2016 Picardan is our first (and California's first) varietal bottling of this unique estate-grown varietal, propagated from budwood cuttings from the Château de Beaucastel estate.
Picardan is on the nose reminiscent in many ways of a softer take on Picpoul; there are aromas of chamomile, mint, and a little chalky minerality. On the palate, soft, rich, and peachy, with a sweet/tangy crystallized pineapple note. The finish is bright with flavors of Meyer lemon zest and key lime pie leavening the richness.
- Adelaida District Paso Robles
- 14% Alcohol by Volume
- 80 Cases Produced
- 100% Picardan
Picardan is one of the Rhone's most obscure white grapes, permitted in Chateauneuf du Pape but with a total footprint in France of just one acre. Apparently more common before phylloxera's arrival in the 19th century. We imported it into the United States in 2003 as part of our goal to have all the Chateauneuf du Pape varieties. It was released to us in 2012, and we planted a half-acre in 2014. Its first harvest was 2016.
The Picardan grapes were grown on our certified organic estate vineyard.
The 2016 vintage, while still marked by drought, saw better rainfall than the four previous years, and the vineyards showed good health through most of the growing season. That season started with a very early budbreak and continued warm weather spurred our earliest-ever beginning to harvest, on August 18th. But beginning mid-August, three cool weeks slowed the ripening for all but our earliest grapes, and allowed them to reach flavor and phenolic maturity with slightly above-average hang time. The resulting vintage shows excellent concentration but also remarkable vibrancy, with electric acids framing appealing juiciness.
The fruit was whole cluster pressed, and fermented with native yeasts in a small variable capacity stainless steel fermenter until bottling in June 2017.