The red grape variety originates from France. Synonyms are Gauget Noir, Gouge Noir, Gouget, Goujet, Lyonnais, Nérou, Neyran, Neyrou. It should not be confused with the Gamay or Pinot Noir varieties, despite seemingly suggestive synonyms or morphological similarities. According to DNA analyses, it is probably a direct descendant of the Gouais Blanc variety; however, the second parent is unknown. The early-ripening vine is very susceptible to botrytis. It yields light-coloured, acidic red wines. It was first mentioned in 1843 as a variety of the departments of Allier and Cher, where it was widespread in the mid-19th century with several thousand hectares. After the phylloxera disaster, it was increasingly replaced by Gamay from the end of the 19th century. At the beginning of the 1960s, it still occupied over 700 hectares of vineyards, but by 2016 this stock had shrunk to just 3.5 hectares (Kym Anderson statistics).
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