Grape Varieties E-F Folle Blanche

Folle Blanche Wine

Folle Blanche is an obscure and rapidly declining grape variety found exclusively in the west of France. In the Pays Nantais (at the far western end of the Loire Valley) it masquerades as Gros Plant, and is used in the tangy, dry white wines sold as Gros Plant du Pays Nantais. In the southwest, it is used in brandy production, most often in Armagnac and, to a lesser extent, Cognac.

The variety was once commonly grown across the west of France. It proved particularly popular in wine districts with reliable access to a port as brandy produced from the variety were widely traded by merchants from England and The Netherlands.

Folle Blanche Grapes
© IFV?INRA?Montpellier SupAgro

Folle Blanche has a bad (and wholly justified) reputation as being highly susceptible to rot and disease. This reputation has seriously hindered the variety's recovery after the devastating phylloxera epidemic of the late 19th Century. Few vignerons were keen to replant their vineyards post-phylloxera with anything but the most disease-resistant varieties. In Armagnac, for example, it has largely been replaced by its more disease-resistant progeny, Baco Blanc, a variety most notable for being the only hybrid grape variety permitted in a French AOC.

With its high acid and relatively neutral flavor profile, Folle Blanche is ideal for brandy production. Although a few producers (notably Armagnac's Domaine du Tariquet) produce single-variety Folle Blanche brandies, it is most often blended with Ugni Blanc and Colombard (see Colombard – Folle – Ugni wines). 

Folle Blanche, like so many French wine grapes, is the offspring of Gouais Blanc. It is a natural parent to the little-known Merlot Blanc, and was used as a parent variety in the creation of the hybrids Folignan, Baco Blanc and Baco Noir.

In some parts of the French southwest, Folle Blanche it is known by the synonym Picpoul, but it is quite distinct from the Picpoul found in Languedoc-Roussillon.

Synonyms include: Gros Plant, Picpoul, Piquepoul, Damery.

Food pairings for Folle Blanche wine include:

  • Fennel carpaccio with gouda
  • Seared white fish with lemon
  • Pilaf with fresh herbs
Production by region Expand/collapse
Most Popular

Most Popular Folle Blanche Wine

Based on search frequency, updated monthly
Wine Name
Region
Popularity
Score
Avg Price
Domaine Pierre Luneau-Papin Gros Plant du Pays Nantais Sur Lie 'Folle Blanche', Loire, France Gros Plant du Pays Nantais 57,387th 87 $15
Domaine de la Fruitiere Gros Plant du Pays Nantais Folle Blanche, Loire, France Gros Plant du Pays Nantais 95,247th 87 $11
Stephane Orieux Domaine de la Bregeonette Gros Plant du Pays Nantais Folle Blanche, Loire, France Gros Plant du Pays Nantais 113,533rd 88 $15
Domaine Bruno Cormerais Gros Plant du Pays Nantais Sur Lie, Loire, France Gros Plant du Pays Nantais 113,533rd 88 $19
Domaine de Papolle Blanche Armagnac, France Blanche Armagnac 125,529th $65
Domaine Bruno Cormerais Methode Traditionnelle Brut, Loire, France Loire 140,866th $18
Chereau Carre Domaine du Bois Bruley Gros-Plant du Pays Nantais Sur Lie, Loire, France Gros Plant du Pays Nantais 150,264th $6
Andre-Michel Bregeon Gros Plant du Pays Nantais, Loire, France Gros Plant du Pays Nantais 161,215th $14
Jean Aubron Gros Plant du Pays Nantais L'Audigere Sur Lie, Loire, France Gros Plant du Pays Nantais 161,215th $12
Domaine du Moulin Camus Gros Plant du Pays Nantais Sur Lie 'Folle Blanche 11', Loire, France Gros Plant du Pays Nantais 161,215th $12
Domaine du Champ Chapron Gros Plant du Pays Nantais Le Clos du Grand Bois, Loire, France Gros Plant du Pays Nantais 174,232nd 88 $7
Vincent Caille Domaine le Fay d'Homme Gros Plant du Pays Nantais La Part du Colibri, Loire, France Gros Plant du Pays Nantais 174,232nd 88 $14
Domaine de l'Ecu 'Marguerite', Loire, France Vin de France - Vin de Table 189,962nd $22
Marc Pesnot Domaine de La Senechaliere Folle Blanche, Loire, Vin de France Vin de France - Vin de Table 189,962nd $21
Domaine Topaze Gros Plant du Pays Nantais, Loire, France Gros Plant du Pays Nantais 209,540th $7
Hubert Rousseau Domaine des Trois Toits Gros Plant du Pays Nantais, Loire, France Gros Plant du Pays Nantais 209,540th $15
Chereau-Carre Vices & Vertus 'Colere' Folle Blanche, France France 235,313th $7
Domaine des Cognettes Gros Plant du Pays Nantais, Loire, France Gros Plant du Pays Nantais 274,936th $8
Claverie Domaine Baraillon Vintage Folle Blanche Bas Armagnac, France Bas Armagnac 274,936th $68
Les Vins Jardines 'Avec la folle blanche c'est tous les jours dimanche', Vin de France Vin de France - Vin de Table 274,936th $11

To see how Wine-Searcher uses average pricing and professional wine critic scores on this page, please see Average Wine Prices and Wine Scores. To find out about popularity, please see Wine Ranks.
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