Grape Varieties

Petit Verdot

Vigorous, moderate yield, late maturing, inky purple color, richly tannic, long lived wines. The variety, even when used in a small percentage, imparts firmness, longevity, and structure to a blend. It is grown on the best drained, most stressful portions of the vineyards soils. In Bordeaux, vintages characterized by a long, warm growing season produce wines from Petit Verdot that are deep in color, with a superb aroma, Spring Mountain Vineyardbouquet, and rich flavor that are a necessary part of the "classic" Bordeaux. This variety is the last to be harvested in Bordeaux, sometimes two weeks after Cabernet Sauvignon. Ch. Lafite is typical of many chateaux with 5% of its planting in Petit Verdot placed on its most stressful soils. In Bordeaux, it is most widely planted in St. Èmilion.

Due to its high vigor and late ripening, P.V. should not be planted on deep rich soils. On Spring Mountain where most vintages would fall under what the Bordelaise would describe as a "moderately hot" growing season, the variety will consistently produce wines of rich color and tannin, but moderate alcohol; making it useful in assembling a blend. Petit Verdot likes sunny exposures, shallow soils (with drip irrigation).