France’s Jura region sits only 50 miles east of Burgundy, but in winemaking terms it’s a world away. The Jura is best known for its light reds and idiosyncratic whites, many of which are purposefully oxidized before bottling. We find these unusual white wines delicious, but admit they’re not to everyone’s taste.
But we’re pretty sure anyone with a taste for white Burgundy will enjoy this new cuvée from Hervé Ligier, our Jura producer. Ligier’s “Cuvée des Poêtes” is pure Savagnin, the same grape as the region’s famous Vin Jaune. But unlike Vin Jaune, this is Savagnin “ouillé,” which literally transaltes to “topped-up.” Instead of allowing the wine to evaporate and the yeast to form over the top of the liquid as in the oxidative wines, winemakers continually refill the barrel to prevent oxidation.
The resulting wine shows all the delicious characteristics of the Savagnin varietal, but with none of the unusual nutty, sherry-like notes of an oxidized “sous-voile.” The nose is bright and a bit earthy, with notes of herbs and yellow apples. The mouth shows a delightful array of spices and fruits – pear, white pepper, chalk, grapeskin.
Picture a classic Bourgogne blanc: add a splash of chalk and herbs and a longer, sturdier shape – and then, given recent Bourgogne pricing, cut the price by a third – and you’ll have this wine. The texture is at once waxy and vibrant with lovely richness and great tension. This matches beautifully with sushi, or as a glass on its own before the meal.
Ligier Côtes de Jura blanc “Cuvée des Poêts” 2019
bottle price: $25
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