AT THE BAR
the méthode champenoise) marks the
entrance to the friendly tasting room
and small museum. The winery, led by
Damien Petit of the Tissot family, produces
Ploussard, Vin Jaune and Savagnin,
WHY DRINK WINES FROM THE JURA?
“The originality and rarity of Jura wines
is their draw,” says Denyse Louis, co-
owner of Louis/Dressner Selections.
“These wines are for the curious or the
knowledgeable, as they have aromas and
a character that set them apart from most
other wines. People who appreciate high
acidity and nutty, quasi-oxidized flavors
for whites or acidity and lightness for reds
like the Jura.”
Jeff Segal is a chef/restaurateur who
often shares the back story on Ploussard.
At Heart in San Francisco, he sells only
small production, naturally made wines. He
first encountered Jura wines while working
in New York where they are more common.
His wine list boasts about 10% Jura
wines, including Jacques Tissot Trousseau.
Unlike Ploussard, which should be drunk
young, Segal likes the aging potential for
Trousseau because of its stronger tannins.
Chang at The Modern serves Chardonnay
from other regions, but keeps her focus on
the Jura’s native white grape. “Savagnin is
one of my favorites. Many white Burgundy
drinkers appreciate the minerality and
balanced acidity that a skilled winemaker
can bring out in wine from this grape.”
lobster with morel mushrooms, green
asparagus and Vin Jaune. Chang pairs the
lobster with Jean Rijckaert Savagnin.
Yet as consultant Charlie Arturaola points
out, Jura wines are not the cheapest on
the list, and are rarely seen outside the
East and West coasts. “Unlike wines of the
Languedoc, these don’t show on my ‘ 25
under $25’ lists.”
LANGUEDOC THE MIGHTY
The Languedoc-Roussillon region,
commonly known as Languedoc, comprises
725,000 vineyard acres and 22 AOCs.
“The price point with this volume is very good,
especially for rosé and reds,” says Arturaola.
What attracts Michael Madrigale to
Jura wines is the poly-culture of the
area—grapes grow next to apple orchards,
hazelnuts, grains and farms where cows
produce milk for Comté cheese. After
his first trip to the Jura, Madrigale, wine
director of Bar Boulud in New York,
was hooked on the diversity and natural
winegrowing of the region.
In the crescent west of Provence, 1,350
companies produce mostly
organic wines in a wide
spectrum of styles from
rustic reds to sweet wines.
The Mediterranean climate
with the coastal Midi, or
noon-sun drenched areas,
leads to consistency
He prefers Vin Jaune to fino sherry, and
menus it. “But I don’t ‘sell’ it. Frankly, many
people don’t understand it. If people are
interested in Comté cheese at the end of
a meal, I’ll encourage them to try it. But I’m
not a preacher.
“Yet Stéphane Tissot Old Vines Ploussard
sells itself. Consumers don’t really know
Ploussard wine yet, but they like its red
berry, Pinto Noir-type flavors combined
with a tannic grip similar to Syrah.”
Domaine de Montbourgeau Vin Jaune from L'Étoile AOC.
Cremant du Jura is Segal’s favorite
sparkling wine after Champagne.
He lists a cremant from Domaine de
Montbourgeau produced by Nicole
Deriaux, granddaughter of the founder of
the estate in the L’Étoile AOC.
JURA WINES AND FOOD
When diners select roast chicken, salmon,
pâté and cheese, Madrigale recommends
a range of Jura wines.
But pairing with Vin Jaune solicits the
most passion from sommeliers and chefs.
Segal at Heart will add Vin Jaune to any
mushroom dish. “When I make poulet au
Vin Jaune, I put one bottle of Puffeney Vin
Jaune in the pot, and I keep one to drink.”
Chang notes that Vin Jaune is always in
the kitchen at The Modern. Chef Gabriel
Kreuther cooks butter-poached Maine
because of the
large bulk wine
and table wine
But fine AOC
wines are now