Yes, it’s a frog – a petite one, who seems to be riding a baguette. I was so excited to see this varietal come in a box, I put my cute-sy label prejudices aside.
Picpoul (pick-pool) is also known as Folle Blanche (Loire Valley) and is sometimes spelled Piquepoul, which means “lip-stinger”, a reference to the wine’s high acidity. It comes in Blanc, Noir (one of the varietals allowed in Châteauneuf-du-Pape) and Gris versions, but the most famous is the Blanc from the Languedoc area of southwestern France.
Picpoul de Pinet is one of the named crus of Coteaux du Languedoc. Cru in this case refers to a recognized region of superior quality and Picpoul de Pinet is a designation that may be used in the Languedoc if it’s a white wine made exclusively from Picpoul Blanc. The wines tend to be greenish-gold in color and round, with lemony-citrus notes.
This particular Picpoul de Pinet (say that three times fast) is the 2008 La Petite Frog by the Cave de Pomerol cooperative. I found it at Astor Wines and it’s clean, bright and zippy. Lemon, grapefruit and a pronounced minerality dominate the palate. It paired beautifully with a pasta dish with fava beans and an herb salad. It’s an interesting, refreshing wine at a reasonable price – 3 liters for $30. Add it to your list of wines to drink this summer.
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