Like its French neighbour Viognier, Roussanne is fresh and herbal when unripe but properly ripened it gets a full-bodied, oily palate of pear and apricot. Odd producers In Australia and America follow the original model - France’s Hermitage blanc - where Roussanne is blended with another ancient neighbour, Marsanne. Roussanne’s acidity tends to be higher than its stablemates so can bring to these blends an age-worthy balance. Single varietal Roussanne is worth trying if you can get it - or afford it - as the few can be tellingly mega-expensive, such as Beaucastel’s Chateauneuf-du-Pape blanc and California’s Sine Qua Non.
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