While little, if any, Poulsard is grown outside of France, this thin-skinned red wine grape variety from France's Jura region, has garnered a substantial following among sommeliers and buyers. This is as much due to the bevy of quirky imported wines from small winemakers, many made with minimal intervention, as it is to the overall quality of wines made with the grape.
What Poulsard offers in spades, however, is the capacity for delicate and perfumed red wines of an eminent, thirst-slaking drinkability. The best examples, from producers including Overnoy and Ganevat, are dainty, fresh and redolent of wild strawberries with a hint of pepper on the finish.
Poulsard's wines can be almost ethereal, lacking both obvious power, but also the complexity of other light-weighted red wines. They are, perhaps, curiosities as much as they are delicious, yet one cannot deny that Poulsard is a distinctive wine of place and intriguing because of this.
Also known as Plousard, Poulsard is so low in pigments that it is both capable of making white wines and pallid copper-toned rosés, even after a week of contact with the skins. Generally, however, Poulsard is used for its signature reds. These are not dissimilar to cooler climatic expressions of Gamay or even Pinot Noir with which, together with the Jura's other indigenous grape variety Trousseau, it is occasionally blended.