Nowadays in New York, if you want to be a hip wine drinker, probably something like a wine-hipster, or let’s just call it winester, there’s no way around Jura wines. Although in most parts of Europe you wouldn’t get a glass of Jura, most of the trendy wine bars and restaurants of New York feature a couple of those singular wines from Eastern France.
Well, luckily I had a chance to be “hip” before the Jura wave swept to Manhattan, when my friend Didier introduced me to the wines of his home region during a trip to Château Chalon. I even got to discover a damn good wine pairing: according to Didier, there’s no better match for a curry then a slightly oxydized Côtes du Jura, and he was probably right.
On the other hand my hipness is somehow doomed to be ephemeral, since the Jura wine offer in Germany is quite limited and there are also so many other great regions to discover. But I also happily seize the opportunity each time I come accross a bottle of Jura wine in a shop, thus also rewarding the shop owner for his spirited portfolio.
And so it happened that when I recently examined a wine shop in Heidelberg, Weinhaus Ott, I stumbled on a few bottles of Jura by Gavenat, Château d’Arlay and Rolet. I decided to pick one and opted for a bottle of 2005 Trousseau by Rolet, as I haven’t had this singular red varietal ever since our trip to Château Chalon, when we even tried a Trousseau from 1989 that was quite impressive.
Of course I had to open the bottle on the next possible occasion, which was: right the next evening. Those who never had a red wine from Jura will be surprised. Its color is such a transparent red, much lighter even than many light-colored Pinot Noirs, that one would never expect it to have much flavor. But from the first sip on you’ll be irritated. On one hand you wouldn’t guess it to have 13% alc, the wine presents itself with gentle wild berries notes and in a light-bodied, quaffable manner. But on the back palate, this fruity drop shows a superb fine grained tannic backbone so that you know you have “real” wine in your glass. The nose of course is equally charming of forest fruit but also has a slight earthy touch to it. If I had to pick one word to describe this wine, it would be “purity” and especially those wine lovers who seek purity in a wine should get their hand on a bottle of red Jura wine.