What is Petit Verdot?
The Petit Verdot, or “little green one” is a classically underrated red wine. Because of its rich boldness, it is commonly used as part of a Bordeaux blend and is rarely produced as a single-varietal, although there are some coming out of Australia, Chile, and some other regions.
Growing the Petit Verdot can be incredibly difficult because of its very specific, necessary conditions. It is very sensitive to water stress and therefore, the weather must cooperate in the springtime in order to encourage maximum ripening. It’s this late ripening that keeps it from being included in many blends, however, the climate requirements do make it a successful grape in places like Australia and California.
This elegant beauty is composed of mostly black fruit flavors like plum, blackberry, blueberry, and even some black cherry, which give it a deep red color similar to the petit Syrah. These flavors are complemented by floral notes like violet and lilac, as well as aromas of vanilla and hazelnut to soften the taste.
Petit Verdot is higher in tannins, so it pairs very well with red meats and hearty dishes. Look for Bordeaux blends that may include it as well as single varietal bottles from regions outside of France.