Petit Manseng – An Obscure Wine Worth Finding


2016 Callaghan Vineyards Greg’s – White Wine

Winery: Sonoita, AZ / Fruit: Willcox AVA, AZ

Wine Tasting Note:

Score: 92/100

My first impression: WOW! Second time tasting Petit Manseng and this knocked me off my feet. This Arizona origin wine was so much better than the first bottle I tasted from Virginia. Kent Callaghan did a great job of producing a seriously good wine from a virtually unknown grape. Rich, floral nose of white flowers, honeysuckle and citrus. The palate was honey, creme brulee, red apple and lemon curd. The wine had crazy high acidity and high alcohol. This could have stood up to being over-oaked. So glad that was not the case. The mouth-feel was rich and smooth and the finish was very long with a touch of clove at the end. This varietal presents like a cross between Chardonnay and Viognier. As I understand it, this grape is used in making a well-known sweet late-harvest wine from the Jurancon in the Southwest region of France. This wine was very fruity, but finishes dry. It is easy to see the potential for shifting the emphasis to a sweet wine. The Petit Manseng vines love the heat and are known for producing high acid fruit, even in very warm and sunny climates. The vines have naturally small berries with very thick skins and tend to ripen with very long hang times – without mold, or mildew. It is almost as if this variety was built with Arizona in mind. It is hard to believe the primary parent variety is Traminer. I like this stuff. If you are a fan of high acid white wines, this will be right up your alley. Enjoy!



Filed under Petit Manseng, U.S. Wines by Region, Wine Education, Wine Tasting, Wine Tasting Notes

5 responses to “Petit Manseng – An Obscure Wine Worth Finding

  1. Thanks for the comments! If you like high acid white wine, this is your varietal! Also, in Kent Callaghan’s most skilled hands, this wine seems to pick up some pixie dust along the way 🙂 Most of his wines compare well with quality wines from around the world. The more interesting part is the experimentation that is going on with farming different varieties in our climate/soil. Historically, at first it was Southern Rhone, then Spanish vines, now warm climate varietals from Southern Italy – like Aglianico. If you enjoy this varietal, you will really appreciate the Callaghan Aglianico…


  2. I love petit manseng cool climate wines


  3. I agree that is a very nice wine. You wouldn’t think at first it that comes from Arizona. We had it for the first time when we were in Scottsdale last January. We just returned from a road trip through Willcox and Sonoita, AZ. and brought back a couple of bottles from the winery. The wineries in Arizona are still finding their way but there are a lot of interesting wines being made there.


  4. Michael Fagin


    Very nicely done. Glad you discovered these AVA’s as we been down there several times. You should try to make a trip there the late fall to early spring well worth it.

    We chatted at the last Wine Bloggers Conference are you going this fall to Walla Walla?

    Michael Fagin

    West Coast Weather, LLC

    Redmond, Washington USA


    Toll free in US and Canada 877-969-4786

    Cell 425-765-6972

    Freelance writer


    • Michael, thanks for dropping me a note. Can’t do it this year. While I love Walla Walla AVA wines, too busy this year around that time. I hope you will be able to make an excursion down to the Milton-Freewater sub-AVA. Wines are super special down there…