Wine-blender's favourite

Colombard will never be in the first division of wine grapes. Instead it is a stalwart of the supermarket bargain bracket, being relatively easy to grow. As it does not have much character, its main purpose is for blending in with wines with more character and popularity with consumers, such as Chardonnay.

In France, however, in the Vin de Pays des Côtes de Gascogne, producers - notably the Grassa family at Tariquet - have recently had success in creating fresh young wines in the style of Sauvignon Blanc.

Colombard is also used in the making of Cognac and Armagnac, where the producers want fairly neutral grapes for the base wine.

Main characteristics

Colour: white; pale to medium gold

Body: light to medium bodied

Tastes: subtle citrus notes

Often blended with: Chardonnay, Ugni Blanc

Keep or drink? Drink

Price range: £3.99-£5.99