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by Tom Hill

A self-admitted wine geek, Tom lives in Northern New Mexico and works as a computational physicist at Los Alamos National Laboratory doing numerical neutron transport & large scale code development. He has been tasting wines since 1971, participates locally with a couple of large tasting groups in his area, and is practically a fixture at most California wine festivals, such as the Hospice du Rhône, Rhône Rangers, and ZAP. Other interests: Tom is heavily into competitive sport fencing (foil & epee), biking, cooking, basketball, skiing, backpacking, mountain climbing.

Mostly Jura Wines - June 26, 2013

We tried tonight (6/26/13) Mostly Jura Wines:

  1. LesChais du Vieux Bourg B.B.1 AC: Cotes du Jura (Lot# CJBB09-1; 14.2%; Chardonnay/Savignan;
    www.Bindernagel.Fr) LudwigBindernagel/NathalieEigenschenck/Arlay 2009
    : Med.gold color; rather fragrant/earthy some phenolic/apple cider/appley/skin-contact bit melony/herbal/wet wool slight oxidized
    slight smokey/pungent/burning forest complex/interesting/unusual nose; very tart earthy/rustic rich/lush/
    floral/wet wool slight cider/melon/herbal/Chard/melon bit rustic/tangy/metallic somewhat tangy/saline
    flavor; long earthy/rustic/tangy rather melony/herbal/rosemary tart/saline/tangy slight pungent/wet wool
    interesting/unusual finish w/ a slight trace of oxidation way in the backtaste; the nose strongly suggests a skin-contact white but it doesn't have the tannic/phenolic character on the palate. $37.00 (Gomers)
  2. LesVins de Vienne Condrieu LaChambee (14%) Cuilleron/Villard/Gaillard/Villa 2009: Med.gold color;
    very strong toasty/smokey/oak/tobaccoy beautiful floral/peach/Viog/melony classic Condrieu/ mineral lovely nose; soft/rich/lush slight toasty/oak very strong floral/peach/mineral/peach blossom classic Condrieu flavor; very long/lingering soft/rich/lush very strong peach/Viog/peach blossom/floral classic Condrieu mineral light toasty/smokey/oak finish; pretty heavy oak in the nose but not so much on the palate; a beautiful/classic Condrieu at a great price. $46.00 (Gomers)
  3. Domaine Berthet-Bondet Nature AC: Cotes du Jura (13.0%; www.MartinesWines.com; www.Berthet-Bondet.net Savignan/sous voile) Ch.Chalon 2010: Light gold color; lovely herbal/lemony/Musque-like/apple/peach/pear some pineapple/floral/apple pie slight oak/tobacco/spicy quite aromatic interesting nose; fairly tart/tangy/saline/metallic herbal/lemony/pineapple/floral some Roussanne-like perfumed/ appley quite interesting/attractive flavor; very long tangy/saline/metallic lush/herbal/lemony/ pineapple/spicy fairly rich/Roussanne-like interesting finish; absolutely no flor yeast/fino sherry/oxidative
    character whatsoever; a bit like a Roussanne from the Savoie more than anything but richer/lusher
    w/o the tutti-fruiti charactor of Calif Roussanne; quite a lovely/interesting white. $27.50 (Gomers)
  4. LesChais du Vieux Bourg PinotNoir AC: Cotes du Jura (Savignin noir; Lot# PN-09-01; 12.7%) 2009: Light ruby red color; quite earthy/dusty/loamy/rustic some bright/cherry/PN/cherry cola/Cheracol slight
    leathery/gamey/metallic quite interesting nose; fairly tart/lean quite earthy/loamy/rustic/root cellar
    some cherry/Cheracol/PN/cherry cough syrup some tannic/mineral/metallic flavor; long tart quite earthy/
    loamy/rustic some cherry/Cheracol/bright/PN finish w/ slight coarse/rough tannins; lots of earthy/loamy
    character and quite terroir driven; some like a Loire or AltoAdige PN but a bit bigger/richer; interesting
    expression of PN. $37.00 (Gomers)
  5. LaCantina di Cuneaz Nadir Badebec DoP: Rosso/Vallee d'Aoste (14.0%; Lot 06-2012; NealRosenthal;
    90% Petit Rouge & 10% Fumin and Vien de Nus) 2011
    : Very dark/near black color; very strong fragrant/perfumedplummy/black cherry/very spicy/kirsch/licorice almost Zin-like slight floral/violets/earthy
    light toasty/oak complex beautiful nose; some tart intense black cherry/boysenberry/kirsch/floral/
    violets very spicy light toasty/oak flavor w/ light/smooth tannins; very long spicy/cherry/black cherry/
    kirsch/cherry compote/boysenberry finish w/ light tannins; a beautiful wine that's almost like a
    DryCreekVlly Zin in character. $34.00 (Gomers)
  6. Gerbelle Didier Torrette DOC: Vallee d'Aosta (13%; 70% PetiteRouge/20% Cornalin/5% Premetta/5% Fumin; www.OMWines.com) 2008: Med.dark color; very strong blackberry/ boysenberry/black cherry/cherry pie some pungent/earthy/smokey/burning forest/licorice/metallic almost Paso Mourvedre-like complex very interesting nose; tart some earthy/loamy/pungent strong black cherry/kirsch/boysenberry light earthy/plummy bit tannic/hard flavor; very long black cherry/cherry pie/boysenberry/kirsch some pungent/earthy somewhat floral/lilacs finish w/ modest tannins; some Pinot-like some high-toned Mourvedre-like; quite an interesting red at a very good price. $19.00 (PC)
  7. Domaine Berthet-Bondet Rubis AC: Cotes du Jura Rose (Poulsard/Trousseau; 12.5%) 2011: Rather light/ruby color; somewhat earthy/mushroomy/loamy bit charred/oak/pungent/burning metal/overheated brake shoe some cherry/perfumed/cinammon/mincemeat light floral/cherry complex/interesting nose; soft bit dilute/washed out pungent/burning metal/earthy/loamy/mushroomy light spicy/cinammon flavor w/ light tannins; med.long light pungent/burning metal/spicy/mincemeat/loamy finish w/ light tannins; hardly what you'd call a rose; a rather interesting vaguely Pinotish-like red, but just that. $23.00 (Gomers)
  8. LesChais du Vieux Bourg Poulsard AC: Cotes du Jura (12.3%; Lot# PLS-09-01) 2009: Light ruby red color; strong cherry/black cherry/licorice/Pinotish bit metallic/earthy/pungent/loamy/rustic slight vegetal/herbal/rosemary nose; fairly tart/lean/tangy bit weak/dilute/delicate some black cherry/ earthy/loamy slight herbal/rosemary/piney somewhat complex flavor w/ some tannins; long earthy/ rustic/loamy/delicate some cherry/black cherry/licorice slight herbal finish w/ modest tannins; a rather earthy/rustic quite interesting Pinotish red. $40.00 (Gomers)
  9. Domain Rolet AC: Arbois Poulsard VieillesVignes (13%) 2005: Med.light color w/ some bricking; somewhat aged/ tired slight pungent/earthy/mushroomy/truffly slight oxidized bit Burgundian/fecal/sweaty sox complex nose; light/delicate some tired/aged bit floral/cherry/insecticide/spicy slight earthy/ Burgundian/mushroomy flavor w/ light tannins; smooth/delicate bit tired/aged light cherry/ mushroomy/earthy finish w/ light tannins; much like an over-mature earthy RedBurg or old Loire Pinot; a rather interesting red but seems to be a bit on the tired side; fairly priced at $19.00 (Monopole)
  10. StephaneTissot VinJaune Arbois (14.5%) 2000: Med.dark gold color; strong earthy/gamey/funky/root cellar rather oxidized/Amatillado-like nose; soft rich/off-dry bit tangy some oxidized/Amatillado-like rather
    honeyed/mead-like complex interesting flavor; very long/lingering funky/earthy/root cellar mead/honeyed
    somewhat oxidized complex finish; pretty interesting wine much like an Amatillado sherry; pricey for
    what it is vis a vis sherry. $65.00/500ml (PMW)

The usual pandering prose from TheBloodyPulpit:

1. Nice write-up on Premetta/Prie Rouge by RobTebeau/FringeWine:
(http://fringewine.blogspot.com/2011/10/premetta-valle-daosta-italy.html) Fumin is a sibling of PetiteRouge and Vien de Nus a progeny of PetiteRouge.
2. Most of these wines came from Gomer's/Midtown in KansasCity on my last trip back there. Lots of
interesting things on the shelf there. JimColey does an excellent job at Gomer's.
3. PetiteRouge: The Badebec is labeled a simple Rosso but could actually be qualifies as a Torrette.
It is a NealRosenthal wine (http://rosenthalwinemerchant.com/?tag=badebec). This is the first time
I've had two PetiteRouges and I thought both the best examples I've tried. The Badebac was a bit pricey (as are most Rosenthals) and rather polished/international in style. I preferred the OliverMcCrum version for its price and a bit more rustic/authentic character.
4. Poulsard: A variety indigeneous to the Juras. The skins have a low degree of polyphenolics, resulting in quite lightly colored wines. They often, to me, have a vaguely Pinotish/cherry character to them and a lot of earthy/loamy character. If anything, they resemble PinotMeunier than PinotNoir. It
would be interesting to see how it would perform in Calif and see if they could amp up the fruit.
5. Jura wines: I've tried a number of the Jura wines over the yrs. Not been a huge fan of them. "Interesting" is the way I'd describe many of them. Many are made "sous voile", which means they let a head space develop in the barrels, they don't top them up (i.e. make in a reductive fashion), and a thin scum (or "veil") develops on the surface of the wine, similar to (but definitely different microbiologically) to the flor yeast of sherry. Consequently, many that I've had in the past have been slightly oxidized and a bit tired and funky.

This batch of Jura wines is by far the best ones I've tasted. My understanding is that the Jura
winemakers are moving towards more modern winemaking techniques and the wines are much cleaner than they used to be. Sigh....another region is losing its authenticity. Next thing you know, the Jura wines will be 15% alcohol, darkly colored & extracted, new Fr. oak...and getting big scores out of Monktown.


[Additional Wine Reviews from Tom Hill]


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