Petit Manseng

Appears in

Oxford Companion to Wine

Oxford Companion to Wine

By Jancis Robinson

Published 2006

  • About

Petit Manseng, top-quality white grape variety originally from south west france which is the superior form of manseng. Petit Manseng, which is much more suitable for sweet wines than its probable progeny gros manseng, has particularly small, thick-skinned berries which yield very little juice (sometimes less than 15 hl/ha, although up to 40 hl/ha (2.3 tons/acre) is allowed for both jurançon and pacherenc) but can withstand lingering on the vine until well into autumn, or even December, so that the sugar is concentrated by the shrivelling process known as passerillage. The variety is however sensitive to both sorts of mildew. By 2011 France’ total plantings had grown to 1,182 ha/2,919 acres, although those of Gros Manseng were more than 3,000 ha.