About French Clones
There are 46 clones in France, the origin of Pinot noir. Its finest wine comes from Burgundy whose clones are chosen for quality. The Champagne clones are chosen for production and used for sparkling wine. The first clonal selection was done by Raymond Bernard from Dijon in the 1950’s as was Chardonnay.
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Clones of Interest
These have the highest ratings and produce elegant, full bodied, complex wines:
|ripening precocious; high quality; interesting for blending;
sometimes irregular production; typical wines with aromas
|regular yields; complex and powerful wines; wines very
typical, rich and bodied
|medium production: very high quality in Burgundy; intense
color and well structured; requires aging; fine and aromatic
wines with tannins and keeping qualities
|very good quality; high color and tannin; good keeping
qualities; complete and very typical wines; very adaptable to all situations
These have medium ratings and are more productive. They make a good base wine, but should not exceed 25% of total planting:
|produces very aromatic wine; cane pruning; sometimes irregular production; balanced but light wines
|sparkling wine clone; good quality when production is controlled; bodied wines–does not improve with sparkling wines elaboration
|superior production; balanced, supple but fairly typical wines; does not age well
|better for sparkling wines; productive; fleshy berries; light and fruity; improves with sparkling wines elaboration
|superior yields; good quality (in some years with low yields, it rates in the highest group); balanced wines with tannins
A: This combination is recommended for long aging wines.
B: This combination is best for younger wines that are more acidic and aromatic.
The information on this page is adapted from
|“A Concise Guide to Wine Grape Clones for Professionals”, Second Edition, by John Caldwell Viticultural Services, June 1998.
|“Catalogue of Selected Wine Grape Varieties and Clones Cultivated in France”, by Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, Ctps, Entav-Inra-Ensam-Onivins, 1997.