Picpoul's varietal character can be similar to that of Chardonnay, and this wine serves as a case in point. It has a beautiful expression of minerality laced into a seemingly familiar fragrant nose of apple and pear. Be they exaggerated or subtle, describing the differences in Picpoul and Chardonnay in Santa Barbara County is something that I will be formulating in the years to come. From the French versions of PicpouI that I have tasted over the years, there is usually a tantalizing presence of citrus, especially a sprightly suggestion of lime, or, at times, even guava. For now, if you were to ask me, “Bryan, how is your Picpoul?”, I might say, “Well, it’s one of the most interesting Chardonnays I have ever made.
We are calling this Gracious because this is turning out to be a very giving variety – it is very versatile. You can make the vibrant stainless fermented with tartness and minerality, or you can put it in a barrel and get real layered with it.