Piquette – a summer wine for everyone

a Summer in August piquette bottles

Waste product or wine substitute? It's the height of fashion in North America. Arnica Rowan considers the social implications as well as the taste.

In François Rozier's late-18th-century manual Cours complet d'agriculture (Complete Course in Agriculture, Volume 7, 1786), instructions on how to make piquette are simple.

I’ll paraphrase from page 714’s ancient French: ‘Once you are done fermenting the wine and have removed the wine from the mashed-up grapes, throw the grapes into some kind of container. Add as much water as grape must. Within the day, a little fermentation will start. The second day, add...