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Chignin-Bergeron Au Pied des Tours, Domaine Jean-François Quénard 2019

White Wine from France - Jura & Savoie
Bergeron is the local name for the roussanne grape and is the speciality of the village of Chignin a few miles south of Chambéry in the shadow of the French Alps. Full-flavoured, though crisper than a roussanne from the Rhône, creamy with complex flavours of peach and vanilla, this is ideal with scallops, crayfish or soft cheeses.
Price: £18.00 Bottle
Price: £216.00 Case of 12
In Stock
Code: JU1571

Wine characteristics

  • White Wine
  • Dry
  • Roussanne
  • 13.5% Alcohol
  • No oak influence
  • Now to 2025
  • 75cl
  • Cork, natural

Jura & Savoie

Jura

Jura is one of France’s smaller wine producing regions, in the east of the country on the border with Switzerland. Most famous for its wonderful unfortified, flor-scented and nutty vin jaune wines, the area produces several different styles of wine from a varied terrain. The one thing they have in common is steep slopes facing south and south-east, and a predominance of the limestone named after the region – Jurassic. Indeed, the appellation of L’Etoile in the southern half of the AC is so-named for the miniscule star-shaped marine fossils found in the soil there.

The vineyards spread along a strip no more than eight miles across at its widest point, and little more than 35 miles long, oriented on a north-east/south-west axis. Winters here are harsh, and the vineyards are interspersed with woodland and pasture. Côtes de Jura is the all-embracing appellation for the area but there are smaller demarcated areas around Arbois, L’Etoile and the famous vin jaune only appellation...
Jura

Jura is one of France’s smaller wine producing regions, in the east of the country on the border with Switzerland. Most famous for its wonderful unfortified, flor-scented and nutty vin jaune wines, the area produces several different styles of wine from a varied terrain. The one thing they have in common is steep slopes facing south and south-east, and a predominance of the limestone named after the region – Jurassic. Indeed, the appellation of L’Etoile in the southern half of the AC is so-named for the miniscule star-shaped marine fossils found in the soil there.

The vineyards spread along a strip no more than eight miles across at its widest point, and little more than 35 miles long, oriented on a north-east/south-west axis. Winters here are harsh, and the vineyards are interspersed with woodland and pasture. Côtes de Jura is the all-embracing appellation for the area but there are smaller demarcated areas around Arbois, L’Etoile and the famous vin jaune only appellation Château-Chalon.

Chardonnay and savagnin make the white wines in these ACs, with the exception of Château-Chalon which can only be vin jaune made from savagnin, with pinot noir, poulsard (also known as ploussard) and trousseau making the reds. Sparkling crémant wines, many of which are excellent are made, as is a pétillant from poulsard. Reds are generally light, particularly so in the case of poulsard.

The great wine of the region is the abovementioned vin jaune. Made from savagnin harvested very ripe, the wine spends six years or so in old Burgundy barrels under a veil of yeast, very much like the flor of Jerez in Spain. It develops a delicious nutty, tangy flavour that marries wonderfully with local specialities like comte cheese and woodland mushrooms, particularly the much prized morilles. The unique 62cl ‘clavelin’ bottle is permitted because of its traditional association with the wine and represents the quantity of wine remaining from the original litre it started life as. Another speciality is the sweet vin de paille made from grapes raisined on straw mats until the January following the harvest. For lovers of pineau de Charente from the cognac region, a Jura Macvin is worth a try, being a blend of grape spirit and grape juice.




Savoie

The vineyards of the Savoie flourish in the Alpine region of France clustered close to the Swiss border and the city of Geneva. The mountains here mean a disparate array of vineyard sites in narrow valleys, many of them specialising in a particularly local grape variety farmed on steep mountain slopes.

The grape varieties mondeuse, jacquere, gringet, altesse, molette, gamay, roussanne, chardonnay and pinot noir all feature. Despite the number of varieties and terroirs to be found here, all are bottled under the catch-all appellation of Vin de Savoie or Savoie, though there are 16 crus that can append their name to the nomenclature e.g. Savoie Chignin.

Whites are generally crisp and fine-boned, particularly the Chignin mentioned above made from jacquere, though Chignin-Bergeron is fuller and rounder and made from roussanne. Reds too are not heavy dark blockbusters. Mondeuse makes characterful, grippy reds, sometimes oak-aged and sometimes made like Beaujolais, but production is geared much more towards white than red.

The area around Chambery in the south of the region is famous for its vermouth.
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Jean-François Quénard

Sitting pretty in to the sparkling air of the French Alps the region of Savoie is chock full of picture perfect vistas of snow-topped peaks, mountain meadows and some gorgeous vineyards. These vines cling to steep slopes, often painstakingly terraced, and it is in just such a location that Michel Quénard farms his 22 hectares of vineyards around the charming village of Chignin. In 1976 he joined his father at the domaine founded by his grandfather in the 1930s, and has now, in turn, been joined by his own sons, Guillaume and Romain. Together they work a domaine dominated by limestone scree, making wonderful wines from their plantings of bergeron (aka roussanne), jacquère, mondeuse, altesse, and pinot noir. The quality of their wines has earned them an international reputation in a region all too little known.

Part of their success is thanks to an unusually warm microclimate in their part of the commune, with a warming southerly exposure that gives their grapes the best chance of ripening in vineyard at this altitude and so close to the Alps. The steepness of the slopes demand hand-harvesting, and the white wines are fermented and aged in stainless steel for the most part, with the reds seeing some time in the large old barrels called foudres. The Anne de Biguerne cuvée is made from fruit picked from a single, one-hectare vineyard planted with old vines of around 65 years of age.
2019 vintage reviews
2018 vintage reviews

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