Côtes du Jura Blanc, Savagnin, “5 Ans d’Âge”
Emeric Foléat owns a parcel of Savagnin in the village of Poligny, within striking distance of the fabled Château-Chalon—considered by some to be the source of the Jura’s greatest Vin Jaune. The 2011, which spent five years in barrels without topping up, embodies the combination of intricate, murmuring depth and powerful oxidative grip for which the zone is famous. As with the Chardonnay “6 ans” above, it is difficult to overstate just how profound an effect such a lengthy aging regimen has on the final wine. Not only does it develop immense complexity through controlled oxidation and the influence of the yeast veil, but the glacial evaporation that occurs serves to concentrate and harmonize all of its elements. While great Jura Chardonnay sits easily alongside the best renditions of that eternally popular grape variety, it is the thick-skinned, late-ripening Savagnin that plays the song of the region with the greatest feeling and fluency.