The white grape variety comes from France. Synonyms are Melié, Melié Blanc, Meslier de Champagne, Meslier Doré, Meslier Jaune, Meslier Petit, Meslier Vert, Orbois and Petit Meslier à Queue Rouge. Although they may appear to be synonyms or morphological similarities, they should not be confused with the Welschriesling (Graševina), Menu Pineau (Orbois) or Meslier Saint-François varieties. According to DNA analyses carried out in 2013, it is probably a natural cross between Gouais Blanc x Savagnin Blanc(Traminer). Petit Meslier comes from the north-east of France between Champagne and Franche-Comté. A presumably natural cross between Gamay x Petit Meslier gave rise to the Meslier Noir variety.
The vine is susceptible to trickling and small berries and especially to botrytis. It produces very acidic white wines with aromas of rhubarb and green apples. For historical reasons, it is approved for champagne like Arbane and is used for example by the famous champagne house Duval-Leroy. In 2010 the area under cultivation was only four hectares. A small stock is also supposed to exist in Australia.
Pictures: © www.champagne.de
Source: Wine Grapes / J. Robinson, J. Harding, J. Vouillamoz / Penguin Books Ltd. 2012