Brett happens

All wine, most of the time

On Borde

leave a comment »

After studying oenology and working at estates in various regions of France, Julien Mareschal founded Domaine de la Borde in Pupillin in the Jura in 2003. The estate currently has 5 ha of vines, 3.5 ha of which are white grape varieties. The vines – the typical mix of Chardonnay, Savagnin, Poulsard, Pinot Noir and Trouseau – average around 30 years of age. Though synthetic chemicals and herbicides have been avoided from the start, the estate officially switched to organic farming only in 2012, when it also began following certain biodynamic procedures.

Arbois Pupillin 2014, Terre du Lilas, Domaine de la Borde ($40.25, 12886494)
100% Chardonnay from a steeply sloped (20°), southwest-facing vineyard of argillo-calcareous topsoil over deep grey marl. Altitude: 450 m. Manually harvested. Eighty percent destemmed. The pressed juice is chilled to 6 to 8°C, then clarified by settling for 12 to 24 hours. Fermented with indigenous yeasts in 500-litre neutral oak barrels. Undergoes malolactic fermentation. Matured on the lees for 20 months. Reducing sugar: 2.4 g/l. 12.5% ABV. Quebec agent: Rézin.
Intriguing nose of toffee, shrimp shells and apricot yogurt. Medium-bodied, hazy and round, with no sharp edges. Apple, lemon, oatmeal and mineral flavours intertwine. Acidity buoys. Finishes long and on a dried seaweed note. Approachable and likeable. (Buy again? Yes.)

Arbois Pupillin 2014, Naturé, Foudre à Canon, Domaine de la Borde ($40.25, 12886566)
100% Naturé (aka Savagnin from a very steeply sloped (30°) vineyard of grey and blue marl covered by paper shale. Altitude: 400 m. Manually harvested. Eighty percent destemmed. The pressed juice is chilled to 6 to 8°C, then clarified by settling for 12 to 24 hours. Fermented with indigenous yeasts in 600- and 1,200-litre foudres. Undergoes malolactic fermentation. Matured on the lees for 20 months. Reducing sugar: <1.2 g/l. 12.5% ABV. Quebec agent: Rézin.
Initial surprising aromas (smoke, “sour cabbage,” “paprika”) segue into less unexpected limestone, pear and dried lemon zest as the wine breathes. Bracing and a little austere on the palate. White and citrus fruit and a mother lode of minerals are thrown into relief by streaming acidity and a striking absence of sugar. White spice and brine haunt the long finish. The purity and delineation are breathtaking. Even better three or four hours after opening. (Buy again? Done!)

Arbois Pupillin 2014, Côte de Caillot, Domaine de la Borde ($40.25, 12886427)
100% Chardonnay from a very steeply sloped (30°), south-facing vineyard of pebbly argillo-calcareous topsoil over limestone. Altitude: 550 m. Manually harvested. Eighty percent destemmed. The pressed juice is chilled to 6 to 8°C, then clarified by settling for 12 to 24 hours. Fermented with indigenous yeasts in second- to fifth-fill 500-litre oak barrels. Undergoes malolactic fermentation. Matured on the lees for 20 months. Reducing sugar: 1.3 g/l. 13% ABV. Quebec agent: Rézin.
Complex nose of “butter,” “smoke,” tropical fruit, sweat, “hay” and a hint of honey. Richer and a bit sweeter seeming than the Lilas. Except for the addition of yellow apple, the flavours echo the nose. Soft-glow acidity provides enough freshness, the aforementioned flavours and a chalky/flinty substrate produce a layered effect. Long, honey-cream finish. (Buy again? Sure though not in preference to the Terre du Lilas.)

A flight that generated a lot of discussion. Most around the table were seduced by the Chardonnays, found the Naturé too austere. When cleaning up after everyone had left, I discovered tail ends of the bottles in the fridge and revisited them. The Chards were still beguiling but seemed a little soft and shapeless and dominated by caramel/toffee/honey. The Naturé, on the other hand, was singing, glorying in its vibrancy, intensity and awesome minerality. I bought a bottle the next day.

MWG October 27, 2016, tasting: flight 3 of 7

Advertisements

Written by carswell

November 17, 2016 at 16:29

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s