For those who seek the special, who are looking for anti-conformism, for originality, for true Terroir wines, for those who don’t want a grape variety to taste the same wherever on this globe it is growing, then necessarily either you already experienced wines from the Jura region or you one day will.
Its wines are genuine and honest, which doesn’t necessarily mean they’re easy: convinced mainstream-drinkers will probably avoid them by all means. They’re often rather what some will call “intellectual”.
This is particularly true for many of the oxidized wines of the region, the ones like Vin Jaune, that made the reputation of Jura. But there are also many non-oxydized wines that are being produced here, and some of them are not a bit less singular.
A good example is this 2008 Les Graviers by Jura icon Stéphane Tissot. A Chardonnay that you can call a Terroir wine without much hesitation – without any start of a discussion about the term Terroir – it’s that singular! Tissot simply created a Chardonnay that wouldn’t taste like any other Chardonnay you had before and therefore most definitely carries a drastic sense of place.
Well, maybe you might not be able to tell judging by its color which is rather light. But then again, there’s an intense golden and reddish shine in the core, making the wine seem mysterious and indicating you might have something unusual in your glass.
The nose reveals much more uniqueness. It is dense, of walnuts and with a certain smokiness. Hard to tell if there’s a certain fruit to identify: maybe orange peel… a hint of tangerine? Capitulation! – Sometimes the whole mix is reminiscent of Marzipan, maybe with an addition of some apple skin. I guess my attempts to describe it are hopeless!
On the palate as well it is puzzling from the start. Just after pulling the cork, the mouthfeel is rather brutal. Acidity is dominating within a sleek mineral body. It nearly feels as if someone was tatooing your palate. A dot of oxydativeness and the classic walnut notes from the Jura are coming along. But considering its harshness, I decided the wine needed some air, and after that it even ended up in the fridge for some days (Sometimes the fridge does magic).
When I pulled it out again eventually, it was more appreciable. But still, there’s something powerful and brutally honest in the acidity, and now I even find it to show some tannin. Well, the wine is certainly not everyone’s taste, but one could definitely not call it trivial, it is one that stays in your memory. But even for those who like it, some food matching might be very welcome. It is calling for strong cheese, Comté of course, but any other intense cheese would work as well. And I wonder if it also goes with a spicy curry the way a Vin Jaune recently dream-matched with it (thanks to Didier‘s recommendation).