J U R A

 

history

First records of plantings in the Jura date back to 80AD 

In the 19th century the vineyard covered 50,000 acres and was planted with 42 grape varieties. At the end of the 19th century Jura was producing mainly red wine though today it is the opposite, with White grapes dominating the vineyards.

In 1879, Phylloxera hit and wiped out almost all of the vines. 


Several Jura locals have made a big impact in the wine industry and deserve to be recognised

Charles Rouget 1828-1899

Studied wine all throught his life, wine grower from Saint-les-Bains. Charles noticed that grape varieites with identical genetic makeup when planted on different sites and soils where named differently.

Alexis Millardet 1838-1899 
He is the mastermind behind the Bordeaux Mixutre, a solution used to fight against mildew 

Louis Pasteur 1822-1895
Chemist and microbiologist. Famous for this development of milk pasteurisation. Louis in the wine world can be thanked for identifying the responsible microbe for fermentation and named it Yeast! 

Alex Arpin 1867-1946 
A wine grower from Arbois, Jura. Fought against wine fraud that emerged all through out France in the early 20th century. Arbois was one of the first regions to receive AOC approval in 1936

 

LOCATION & CLIMATE

The vineyards cover the whole Jura department area, 5,000 acres


The Jura department is located in Franche-Comte region of France

 

Mountainous Region

 

Located between Burgundy and Switzerland 

 

Climate Contiental with alpine influences 

 

Significant dirunal and seasonal temperature swings 

 

Grapes require a minimum of 1,400 of sunlight hours to ripen and the Jura region recieves more then enough at 1700-1900 hours per year

 

In order to protect the vines from the cold northly winds the vineyards aspects are South and South-West 

 

Geology & topography

Soil layers of shale, clay and limestone

175-150 million years ago
2 layers of shale, red and grey were covered with Bajocian limestone during the middle of the Jurassic period. 




200-175 million years ago Grey shale
Sandwiched between the Bajocian limestone and Red shale soils is Grey shale The grey shale is mixed in with oyster shell deposits that formed during the juarassic period 



200-175 million years ago Red shale
The bottom layer of soil of sub soil dating back to the Triassic period 

 


Most vineyards are planted on the slope


The vine is facing South and South-West in order to protect the vines from the cold winds coming from the North

Limestone

Grey Shale

Red Shale

 

grape varieties

Today the vineyards of Jura are planted with 5 different grapes varieties
 

Chardonnay


Savagnin Blanc
 

Poulsard
 

Pinot Noir
 

Trousseau

 

Chardonnay
Planted in the Jura since the 10th century 
Most planted white grape
43% of total vineyard area
Local names for Chardonnay 


+Melon d'Arbois
+Moular
+Gamay Blanc


Savagnin Blanc 
Produces traditional wine Vin Jaune, a wine similar in Sherry made with oxidative winemaking practises

Poulsard also known as Ploussard
Red grape used to make rose,white wine and Vin de Paille
Most planted red grape 
14% of total vineyard area
Native to the Jura 

In the L'Etoile AOC Poulsard is used to produced a white wine

Trousseau 
Native to the Franche-Comte region
First planted in the Jura in the 18th century


Pinot Noir
1st grape to harvest in the Jura
Represents  37% of all red planted, 13% total acreage

 

 

 

Wine styles

The Jura produces a wide range of styles, dry red wine, white wine, cremant, sweet wines and fortified wine.

 

2 tradtional wines from this region are Vin de Paille and Vin Jaune. 

Aging White wine in Jura 

 

Ullage - is a winemaking term most commonly referring to the headspace of air between wine and the top of the container. The container could be a barrel, tank, bottle etc.

 

In the Jura white wines can be aged with or without ullage 

 

Without Ullage -  no head space 

 

As the wine aging evaporates the winemaker will top up the barrel to avoid air contact and oxidation.

 

This is a common aging practise for Chardonnay.

 

If the wine is aged in stainless steel tanks, the wine will not be exposed to oxygen

 

With Ullage - head space

 

Opposite applies, there is headspace in the container holding the wine, The winemaker does not fill up the barrel completely exposing the wine to air allowing for the development of yeast to surface that will metabolise several acids in the wine such as, ethyl acetate, tartaric, malic, lactic and pyruvic.

 

What the winemaker is doing is controlling the oxidation of the wine, allowing for the development of new aromas, walnut, hazelnut and spice. 

 

Grapes used are Chardonnay and Savanin Blanc

 

If the wine is a blended product they will usually label it "tradition

 

 

Vin Jaune 

 

 

Originated in Chateau-Chalon 

 

Today this wine is produced in Arbois, L'Etolie and Cotes du Jura AOCs

 

Only grape variety used is Savagnin Blanc 

 

 

Production process

 

 

After regular wine fermentation is complete the wine is stored for a minimum for 6 years and 3 months in oak casks. 

 

The wine is aged with ullage (controlled oxidation) allowing for a layers of surface yeast to develop and metabolise acids in the wine and turn them into aldehydes

 

This method of production creates a wine this a unique sherry characteristic. 

 

Over the 6 year period of aging a lot of the wine will have evaporated for the oak cask. The wine is sold in 620ml bottles called Clavelins. 

 

Vin Jaune is a style of wine and not an AOC

 

 

Vin de Paille (Straw Wine)

 

The grapes used to produce Vin de Paille are

 

Chardonnay, Poulsard, and/or Savagin blanc 

 

The grapes must be perfectly ripe and unblemished.

 

Grape clusteres are dried for a minimum of 6 weeks on a bed or straw or on wicker racks. 

 

Drying the grapes asllows the fruit to concentrate the sugars and flavour compounds. 

 

Once the grapes have dried they are pressed, fermentation is slow and the must (grape juice) is unable to ferment to dryness creating a naturally sweet wine with an alcohol level between 14-19%.

 

After the fermentation is complete the wine must age for 3 years in barrel allowing for the developmet of flavours and aromas of prune, honey, caramel and candied orange.

 

AOC's allowed to produce this style of wine are

 

Cotes du Jura, L'Etoile and Arbois

 

Labelling the wine "tradtional method" due to the long and particular production method. 

 

Vin de Paille is a style of wine and not an AOC

 

 

appellations

Arbois AOC 

 

1 of the first French wine regions to receive AOC status in 1936 thanks to Alexis Arpin as mentioned above in the history section. 

 

Largest AOC of the Jura, 13 villages

 

Soil, shale, clay, sand and limestone

 

5 grape varieties are all planted here 

 

Production is 70% Red and 30% White 

 

Chateau-Chalon AOC 

 

Is 125 acres of only Savagin Blanc only used for the production of Vin Jaune, In years where the grapes are deemed unsatisfacotry the wine will be declassified to the Cotes du Jura AOC 

 

L Etoile AOC 

 

Translates in the english word Star, AOC is named because it is surrounded for 5 hills that form the shape of a star. 

 

Chardonnay planted the most 

Savagin blanc 

Poulsard used is the production of Vin de Paille 

 

Cotes du Jura AOC 

 

2nd largest AOC, 105 villages

 

Producing mostly White wine and Cremant.

 

Both must contain atleast 50% Chardonnay and Savagin Blanc. 

 

Pinot Noir and Trousseau when vinified as white wine can be added to the blend although it is uncommon 

 

Vin de Paille may be a blend of Chardonnay, Savagin Blanc, Poulsard and Trousseau

 

Vin de Jaune is only made from the grape variety Savagin Blanc 

 

Macvin du Jura AOC 

 

Marc- is made from distilling Jura wine pomace, pomace is the soild remains of grapes. The Marc must be aged for a minimum of 18 months in barrel before it can be aded to the must to fortify the wine.

 

Production 

 

This production method and style dates back to the 14th century 

 

1/3 of the wine is Marc and is added to the unfermented grape juice to allow the wine to be fortified.

 

Age for a minimum of 12 months in cask and the final alchol level is between 16-22% 

 

All 5 grapes may be used for the production of Macvin and can be red or white.

 

Mostly White Macvin is produced

 

Cremant du Jura AOC

 

Recieved AOC status in 1995

 

All 5 grape varieties are approved though must come from Cotes du Jura, Arbois and E'Ltoile AOCs

 

Must be hand harvested 

 

90% White Cremant containing a minimum of 50% Chardonnay

 

Rose Cremant, minimum of 50% Poulsard and Pinot Noir 

 

26% of wine production in the Jura is Cremant produced in both Brut and demi-sec 

 

 

 

POMACE

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