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Prunelard

prunelardName and etymology

Prunelard refers to a similarity between the grape berries and plums. Indeed, prunelard berries skins are covered by a kind of dust, which make them look like plum skin (Reine Claude variety).

Synonyms
There are little or no real synonyms for this variety.

Color: red

The geographic origin
This variety is probably from the Gaillac area. It is described from the sixteenth century as a quality grape. Following the phylloxera crisis, this variety had been declared as lost. It is only recently that a group of vine growers from Gaillac rediscovered it in old vineyards.

The affiliations
It is not easy to make the difference in between Prunelard and Malbec. Only a few minor ampelographic differences are to count. Because of their similarities, the French Agronomic institute applied genetic tests to them, the result is that the Prunelard is the father of Malbec (his mother is a Magdeleine noire des Charentes). It is in fact involved in the family Cotoîdes and even seems to be one of the oldest representatives.

The designations that use and / or major production areas abroad.
While it could be part of forgotten grape varieties, the Prunelard seems to know a new attraction. The vineyards surface increase to reach fifteen hectares today. It is possible that this variety known a major craze in the coming years, as the wines are qualitative. Regarding the wines and the true potential of the grape, the Gaillac AOC is about thinking to reintegrate Prunelard in its decree. That will be an happy ending for these grape as it used to be the most cultivated one before the Phyloxera crisis.

Production potential
Clones grown nowadays seem to be qualitative clones. Bunches are small to medium and berries are quite small and very colorful.

The most beautiful expressions / oenological potential.
The first results from the re-cultivation of Prunelard are rather encouraging. The wines are structured without being too tannic. Prunelard gives roundness and develops beautiful deep black fruits aromas. It could be blended with Braucol and Duras, but seems to be able to exist on its own.

 

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