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Domaine de la Touraize, Arbois Vin Jaune (2015)

Domaine de la Touraize, Arbois Vin Jaune (2015)

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André-Jean Morin obtained organic certification in 2016 and biodynamic certification in 2019, and his approach in the vineyards is rigorously labor-intensive: not only is harvest conducted by hand, but nearly all vineyard work is performed manually. His approach in the cellar is adamantly non-interventionist: he never adds yeasts, never chaptalizes, never adds sulfur before malolactic fermentation is finished, never pumps the wines, never fines, never filters, and keeps sulfur additions between 10 and 20 milligrams per liter. Despite a relative absence of controls, however, A-J’s wines are unfailingly clean, precise, and expressive—a reflection of his exacting, fastidious working regimen.

From the same hectare of northwest-exposed Savagnin in Petit Curoulet as the Savagnin “Sous Voile,” Touraize’s Vin Jaune is produced in painfully small quantities—between 700 and 1000 bottles per vintage. Aged the requisite six years and three months in used 228-liter barrels in the winery’s attic, it comes across as fresh and lifted despite the panoply of natural-veil-derived oxidative flavors, with deep yellow fruits commingling with notes of fresh leather, pink salt, and candied almonds. It is rare to find a Vin Jaune so precise and refreshing as this, but it fits beautifully alongside the rest of A-J’s lineup stylistically.

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