Cremant du Jura Indigène NV
A Wine That
LITTLE HQ has been dreaming about since our first sip with winemaker, Stéphane Tissot. It's one of those wines that reaffirms why we choose not to score wine — how could we put a number on something so mystical? A wine that challenged the norm; this natural take on the traditional method represents the Tissot family's forward thinking approach to winemaking. Think pretzel dough, lime juice, salt and honey — without the sugar.
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- Winemaker: Domaine Tissot
Where and How?
This comes from biodynamically farmed Chardonnay (50%), Pinot Noir (40%), Trousseau (5%) and Poulsard (5%), from the Tissot vieyards in the Arbois, Jura. Half of the vines are planted on 'trias' clay, and the other half on Bajocian limestone, the vineyards face west, and the vines are on average 25 years old.
The grapes are hand harvested in small boxes, and are pressed directly in a pneumatic press. The juice ferments naturally; 40% in stainless steel, and 60% in barrels, with around 60% of the total being left without added sulfites. The wine is then aged on the lees for four months, during which period the malolactic fermentation occurs naturally. In January, instead of using the sugar/lab-cultured yeast usually used in traditional fermentation (inc. in Champagne), they create the 'prise de mousse' using vin de paille together with frozen grape juice. This then referments the wine in the bottle, and this process of refermentation in bottle then takes between six and seven months (whereas with the industial sugar/yeast mixture it takes two). The Tissots believe that the natural yeasts present in the vin de paille bring additional complexity and richness. The final wine then ages for 18 months, and is disgorged without dosage, nor sulfites. The wine finishes completely dry.
The Winemaker: Domaine Tissot
Stéphane Tissot believes that great emotion can be found in a bottle of wine. That emotion, however, he reminds us adamantly can only be transported to the glass from vineyards that are farmed organically. He underlines that wine is not a necessity: it isn’t like corn or wheat which is essential for food production. This makes us think in ways we haven’t thought before; there really should be no excuse for chemically treated, unhealthy, unhappy vineyards.
He also believes that the wine he makes reflects his personality. As he changes and grows, so do his wines. He is a man that never stands still, but continues his quest of trying to improve his wines, year on year.