The Napa Gamay or Valdiguie Grape of California has been misidentified for decades until the early 1990s when the mistake was discovered. Previously, many California vineyards mislabeled the grape as a Gamay Noir or Gamay Beaujolais. However, DNA testing identified the Napa Gamay not as a Gamay, but as Valdiguie, a varietal from Southern France’s Languedoc-Roussillon region. As of now Napa Gamay and Valdiguie are interchangeable, but by April 2007 all wine producers must use only Valdiguie on their labels.
The Valdiguie grape makes a light to medium bodied wine in a style similar to true Gamay from Beaujolais—a juicy, low-tannin, easy drinking wine. The Valdiguie grape is both its highly productive and naturally resistant to powdery mildew.Back to the archive >