The grape variety with many colourful varieties probably originates from France. There are about 40 synonyms; some of them are Blue Blussard, Blue Malvasia, Blussard, Blussard Blue, Blussard Modry, Cornelle, Drille de Coq, Small-leaved Finger Grape, Mècle, Mescle, Méthie, Miècle, Olivette, Pandouleau, Pellosard, Pelossard, Pelousard, Peloussard, Pendoulot, Plant d'Arbois Pleusard, Pleusart, Plousard, Ploussard, Ploussard Noir, Ploussart, Ploussart Noir, Plussart, Polozard, Poulsard Blanc, Poulsard Rouge, Poulsard Noir, Poulsard Noir Musqué, Pulceau, Pulsard, Pulsars, Pulsars Blue, Quille de Coque, Raisin Pearl, Black Malvasia and Yurskii Zhemchug
It must not be confused with the Mècle de Bourgoin, Peloursin or Tressot Noir varieties, despite the fact that they appear to have synonyms or morphological similarities. The most common variety Poulsard Noir has a plum-like colour (pelosse is the name commonly used for plum in the Jura). There are the colour mutations Poulsard Blanc (white) and Poulsard Rouge (red), as well as the flavourful variety Poulsard Noir Musqué with a subtle muscat. An open flowered seedling of Poulsard is the variety Bacchus Noir. However, all these varieties are almost extinct or no longer play a role in viticulture.
This ancient variety was already mentioned in 1386 under the name Polozard in Lons-le-Saunier in the Jura appellation. The German ampelographer Johann Christian Metzger (1789-1852) mentioned it in his 1836 work "Die Wein- und Tafeltrauben der deutschen Weinberge und Gärten" (The Wine and Table Grapes of German Vineyards and Gardens) under the name Blauer Blussard. At that time, it was widespread in the Swiss-French border region on Lake Geneva and in Germany at the Kaiserstuhl in Baden. The early ripening vine is susceptible to trickling and powdery mildew.
The large, thin-skinned berries have few colorants. It produces fragrant, rather light-coloured and not very full-bodied red wines, but still with a certain storage potential. These are mostly blended with Trousseau and Pinot Noir. It is also used as a table grape. The Poulsard Noir is mainly cultivated in the Jura region, where it is also permitted in white wines in some appellations. Small quantities are also found in the Bugey area. In 2010, 307 hectares were registered for Poulsard Noir and 1 hectare for Poulsard Blanc.
Source: Wine Grapes / J. Robinson, J. Harding, J. Vouillamoz / Penguin Books Ltd. 2012
Pictures: Ursula Brühl, Doris Schneider, Julius Kühn Institute (JKI)