Gouias blanc in Aus

by David Murray
(Hobart)

David asksAfter trying the most recent vintage of gouias blanc from Chambers Rutherglen, I was wondering if you knew if anyone else grew (and sold) it.

I have an inkling I may have tried a one off bottling of it a few years ago in Tasmania but I am not sure.

You don't seem to have an entry for the grape.

Darby Replies

Sorry for the tardy reply.


No, David I don't know of anyone else with Gouais blanc in Australia. Maybe some else does and can leave a comment below.

Gouais Blanc is an ancient variety which was used in Europe in the Middle Ages. It is now almost extinct; there are just a handful of isolated vineyards using it in Europe as well as Chambers Rosewood in Rutherglen.

Chambers Rosewood is a extremely acidic wine. Don't try to drink it without some food!

You can estimate the importance of a grape variety in a number of ways. First is how much of it is planted worldwide - less than a hectare! In 2010 there were 290,000 hectares of Cabernet Sauvignon, and that figure is likely to be going up as the Chinese are planting massive new vineyards of it.

A second measure of the importance of a grape variety is how much space wine writrer give to variety. For example in Jancis Robinson's Wine Grapes, three whole pages are devoted to the variety. Other rare varieties get a couple of sentences.
The reason is that Gouais Blanc, "The Cassanova of Grapes" is the proginotor of more than eighty existing grape varieties including Chardonnay and Gamay.

As recently as the 1980s Gouais was used in a cross with Gewurztraminer to produce a new variety, Mennas, grown in just one Swiss vineyard.

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