Vidal Blanc - A Versatile and Hardy White Grape Variety
Vidal Blanc is a hybrid white grape variety known for its versatility and cold hardiness. Developed by the French grape breeder Jean-Louis Vidal, Vidal Blanc is a hybrid of Ugni Blanc and Rayon d'Or. The grape has quickly become a popular choice among winemakers in cold-climate regions of the United States and Canada.
Climate and Terroir:
Vidal Blanc is well-suited to the cool climate of Prince Edward County and Niagara-on-the-Lake. The grape variety is hardy and can tolerate temperatures as low as -30C. Vidal Blanc is a vigorous vine, requiring a strong trellis system and proper pruning to manage yields. The grape is resistant to common cold-climate diseases such as powdery mildew and black rot and is also tolerant to downy mildew.
Vidal Blanc is a very hardy variety. In trials, it has been proven hardy to as low as -30°C. This variety is reliably fruitful on secondary buds that typically are not injured in cold winters. Vidal Blanc can be trained onto Vertical Shoot Positioning (VSP), High Wire (HW), or Geneva double curtain training systems, depending on the grower’s preference. Its semi-trailing growth habit makes it suitable for HW, but it can also be trained to VSP.
Vidal Blanc grapes produce wine with a pale colour and a complex flavour profile. The grape is known for its fruity flavours such as citrus, honey, and apricot, with notes of floral and mineral. The wine has good acidity and is versatile, making it suitable for a variety of wine styles. At Traynor Family Vineyard, we source Vidal Blanc grapes from Hillier Creek Estates in Prince Edward County, and Watson Vineyards in Niagara-on-the-Lake. The Hillier Creek grapes are used in our Green Meanie White Pet-Nat, while the Watson grapes are used in several of our wines including Breakfast in the Vineyard, Pet-Nat Red, Madonna Vermouth and Ophelia Piquette.
The Vidal Blanc grown in Prince Edward County is known for its unique characteristics, the colder climate of the region tends to give the grapes a higher acidity which can be beneficial for sparkling wine production. The Vidal Blanc grapes grown in Niagara-on-the-Lake are known for their rich and complex flavour profile. The combination of these two growing regions allows us to create unique and delicious wines for our customers to enjoy.