Pacherenc-du-vic-bilh, original white wines from the South West
This AOC white wine from the South-West can be dry or sweet, depending on whether or not the climatic conditions favour the ripening of the grapes. Situated in a loop of the Adour river, a hundred kilometres from the ocean and at the foot of the Pyrenees, the Pacherenc-du-Vic-Bilh vineyards benefit from special climatic conditions. Its area of production merges with that of another prestigious AOC of the South-West, in red this one: Madiran. Like the latter, the Pacherenc-du-Vic-Bilh AOC pays tribute to the local grape varieties and its exceptional terroir.
General presentation of the appellation pacherenc-du-vic-bilh
The Pacherenc-du-Vic-Bilh vineyard is located north-west of Pau, on the borders of three departments. The appellation covers 3 communes in the Gers, 28 in the Pyrénées-Atlantiques and 6 in the Hautes-Pyrénées. Its geographical area is the same as that of Madiran. It has about 300 hectares of vines. This AOC belongs to the vineyards of the South-West and to the sub-region of the Pyrenean Piedmont.
Pacherenc-du-Vic-Bilh is the name adopted for sweet wines, i.e. wines in which the grapes are naturally concentrated in sugar through the passerillage process. Dry white wines are marketed under the name of dry Pacherenc-du-Vic-Bilh. The sweet wines are in the majority; they represent about 2/3 of the production.
The grape varieties used bring Pacherenc-du-Vic-Bilh closer to another white wine from the region, Jurançon. These two AOCs use gros manseng and petit manseng, as well as petit courbu. Pacherenc-du-Vic-Bilh also uses Arrufiac.
Characteristics of Pacherenc-du-Vic-Bilh
Pacherenc-du-Vic-Bilh is a sweet wine that is both intense and complex. Its colour is brilliant, all gold and copper. Its rich aromatic palette is dominated by candied fruits, dried fruits and exotic fruits. One can detect aromas of pear, quince, apricot, apple, mango, almond, walnut and hazelnut. This greedy bouquet is still coated with honey. This is a wine for keeping, which improves with age. A Pacherenc-du-Vic-Bilh can easily be aged for 10 years, or even 15 years or more.
The dry Pacherenc-du-Vic-Bilh is best consumed in its youth. This fresh, lively and fruity white wine has a tender golden colour. Its aromatic palette is also dominated by fruit: citrus (lemon), exotic fruit (pineapple) and white flesh (medlar, peach, apricot). Notes of honey further enrich this delicious nose, as well as a floral bouquet, particularly wisteria.
How to enjoy a Pacherenc-du-Vic-Bilh
When it is mellow, Pacherenc-du-Vic-Bilh is recommended to accompany foie gras. This white wine also reveals all the originality of a lamb tajine with lemon or a duck with peaches. It is also ideal with cheeses from the Pyrenees or blue cheese. Finally, it is a dessert wine that is perfect with apricot pie, crème brûlée, vanilla ice cream, walnut or chestnut desserts, etc. We recommend serving a Pacherenc-du-Vic-Bilh AOC at a temperature of between 10 and 13°C.
Dry Pacherenc-du-Vic-Bilh is perfect as an aperitif. This original white wine also goes well with many dishes: fish, seafood, white meats, salads, vegetables... and sushi. It is best served at a temperature of 10°.