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Wine Advisor Express:
"Lip-stinging" Picpoul

Following up on yesterday's excursion to Morgon in Beaujolais, let's have another French lesson in a glass with today's tasting, a white wine made from an unusual grape with an odd name: Picpoul ("Peek-pool"), I'm reliably informed, translates as "lip stinger."

Once widely grown throughout Southern France, Picpoul is one of the 13 grapes permitted in Chateauneuf-du-Pape. But it's seldom used in modern times except in the Picpoul de Pinet region of Coteaux du Languedoc, with its sandy coastal vineyards around Sete, the Mediterranean seaport town near Montpellier.

A grape so acidic that its tartness "piques" your mouth might not seem immediately appealing. But today's wine presents vinous acidity at its appetizing best, in an affordable, rather full-bodied white wine that expresses its tangy tartness in the guise of lemons. It's a natural with food, and its zippy freshness makes it a fine wine to sip cold on a summer afternoon.

Picpoul de Pinet Hugues Beaulieu 1999 Picpoul de Pinet Coteaux du Languedoc ($7.99)
This is a clear, light greenish-gold wine with a delicate, distictively lemon-scented aroma that carries over intact on the palate in a rather full but crisp lemony flavor with a pleasant, almost oily touch of freshly grated lemon peel in the finish. U.S. importer: Kysela Pere et Fils Ltd., Winchester, Va. (July 23, 2001)

FOOD MATCH: A natural with seafood and fish, it also worked well with last night's light summer dinner of garden-fresh eggplant and tomatoes tossed with a bit of chopped pork over penne pasta.

Wine 'Toon Calendar 2002!

Be among the first to order the Wine Lovers Page Wine 'Toon Calendar! Wine lovers won't want to miss our handy and chuckle-worthy collection of cartoonist Chuck Stoudt's zany wine 'toons ... plus dozens of favorite wine quotes for every season, AND a highlighted Wine Link of the Week! If you pre-order the Wine Toon Calendar before Sept. 1, 2001, it's only $9.99 plus shipping and handling. After Sept. 1, prices will go up. Order now, and you'll be all set for holiday giving! For the details, see:

Express Notes:

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Tuesday, July 24, 2001
Copyright 2001 by Robin Garr. All rights reserved.

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