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Petit Manseng

Petit Manseng

Petit Manseng originates in the Jurançon region of southwest France. It is a small, thick-skinned grape that grows in loose clusters making it ideal for production in Virginia. Chrysalis Vineyards is the pioneer in bringing Petit Manseng to the United States. In 2002, Chrysalis’ owner Jennifer McCloud was granted by the BATF to include Petit Manseng on the list of “Primary Names” for varietally labeled wines in America. This is the first Petit Manseng so labeled in the United States. Petit Manseng requires a long growing season and produces small yields of high-quality grapes that are ideally suited to produce dessert wine. The grapes are frozen to simulate the process of an “ice wine,” concentrating the sugar and fruit flavors, and then are whole cluster pressed and barrel fermented without undergoing malolactic fermentation. The wine is an aromatic nectar that is amber and viscous, yet balanced with enough acidity to avoid a cloying sweetness. The intense floral perfumes of honeysuckle permeate the nose, followed by layers of rich caramel, butterscotch, almonds, and spice, filling the mid-palate.