Where?

Located between Burgundy and Swiss border in the South West wine region. It is about 270km south west of Paris but only 150km west of Bern in Switzerland. Climatically Jura is broadly similar to Burgundy however can be prone to cold snaps that often give cause to a delayed harvest.

Map can be found here.

 

What?

As if the profile of the Jura wasn’t small enough (outside of hard-core fans) total plantings barely exceed 2,000 hectares ensuring that the wines will always have limited distribution and sit higher up the cost curve. Compounding this further is the fact some 60% of wine production comes via co-ops or négociants.

There are 6 AOC/AOP definitions:

  • Arbois
  • Chateau Chalon
  • Cremant du Jura
  • Cotes du Jura (regional AOC)
  • L’Etoile
  • Macvin du Jura (a rare fortified AOC)

 

Permitted Grapes & Wine Styles

Red Wines

  • Pinot Noir (most planted red)
  • Poulsard – a super light and soft red that looks like a rose with a pale tomato red appearance
  • Trousseau – low alcohol grape that can show attractive raspberry flavours and very fine tannin
  • Macvin du Jura (vin de liquer)

 

White Wines

  • Chardonnay (most planted white); the leading examples are often blended with Savagnin
  • Savagnin (the grape that was mistakenly introduced to Australian growers as Albarino back in 2009. Some 20 – 30 vineyards were planted out before the error was identified!)
  • Vin Juane – Jura’s most famous and expensive wine somewhat akin to dry Sherry (Savagnin aged under a thin film of yeast more than six years). Understandably it only accounts for 4% of the region’s total production.
  • Vin de Paille – a seemingly unusual blend of Chardonnay, Savagnin and Poulsard made in a Amarone style.
  • Cremant du Jura sparkling wine
  • Macvin du Jura (vin de liquer)

      

    Rules & Restrictions

    • Not a ‘rule’ as such but a key winemaking tradition in the Jura is to determine whether or not the whites are made in a deliberately oxidative style. Wine made in this style might be labelled ‘Tradition’ or ‘Typé’ but unfortunately such labelling is not always present on the bottle.
    • Cremant du Jura can be produced from all 5 permitted grapees PLUS Pinot Gris.
    • Macvin du Jura grape must be aged in barrel for 12 months without prior fermentation in tanks. Spirit is added at a ratio of 1:2.
    • Vin Juane: 100% Savagnin with potential alcohol of between 13% and 15%, at least 6 years in barrel, bottled in a 620ml bottle called a ‘clavelin’.