Vin de France & Grape Varieties


Encyclopedia of French Grape Varieties

{ White Wine }


This grape variety seems to originate from the Tarn Valley in southwestern France, between Toulouse and Albi. It bears the name of a village that is located near Toulouse.

Mauzac's dominant aromas, green apple and sometimes pear, can be clearly identified when tasting its wines. Other notes commonly encountered in sweet wines made with Mauzac are honey and sweet spices.

Wines produced
Mauzac produces wines that are relatively rich in alcohol. In dry, sunny years, the grapes can overripen and enable production of highly sought-after sweet wines. They are best enjoyed young, however, as they are susceptible to oxidation.

Areas planted
Mauzac is mainly grown in the Toulouse area, namely in Limoux and Gaillac. Production has decreased slowly since the 1960s, falling from 9,167 hectares in 1968 to 2,600 in 2006.

Budding and ripening
Mauzac is a relatively late grape variety. It buds 7 days after Chasselas, the benchmark grape variety for classifying vines in terms of their budding and ripening times. It ripens 3 1/2 weeks after Chasselas, making it a Period II grape variety.

Mauzac is moderately vigorous, yet quite productive, which means it must be pruned short in order to obtain good results. As its acid potential is moderate, it is not a long-keeping variety.  

Preferred soils
Mauzac clearly prefers essentially limestone soils, but does not fare well in very dry, thin soils, making it well suited to calcareous marls or even clay-limestone soils.

Ideal Climate
Like all of the late-ripening varieties of southwestern France, Mauzac needs summer heat and beautiful late seasons, which enable it to ripen slowly. Nevertheless, it needs sufficient watering, which means that it cannot be planted in strictly Mediterranean areas, where there is always summertime drought.

Susceptibility to disease and pests
Mauzac is sensitive to mites (in particular acariosis), grape berry moths, eutypiosis and gray mold. However, it shows little susceptibility to oidium and mildew.

Mauzac is used only to produce wine and, through distilling, brandies.

Distinctive features
Mauzac's clusters and berries are medium-sized, with a short stalk. The berries are round or slightly oblong. At the tips of young shoots, there are many flat-lying hairs. The young leaves are either white or yellow. Its shoots have green internodes and its adult leaves are orbicular (round) or heart-shaped.

Clones marketed
The seven approved Mauzac clones (specifically named Mauzac B) are numbers 575, 738, 739, 740, 741, 898 and 899. A conservatory of 200 clones was planted in the vineyards of Gaillac (Tarn) in 1998.

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