Michel Gahier Arbois Blanc Melon Queue Rouge La Fauquette
Regular price $60.00
Winemaker: Michel Gahier
Appellation: Arbois, Jura, France
Grape Varieties: Chardonnay
This cuvée, again from a single vineyard in Montigny, is aged for one year in large foudres at which point it is then racked into smaller barrel for an additional three years “sous voile”. Called Chardonnay, the vines are of the local variety known as “Melon Queue Rouge”, a white grape the skin color of which bleeds towards red as it approaches the stem.
We fell for the wines of Michel Gahier while dining at the Table de Chaintré, a lovely little bistro in the Maconnais. Yes, not the Jura! But, the young couple running the restaurant had just finished a “stage” at the esteemed restaurant in Arbois “Jean-Paul Jeunet” and brought their love of the Jura wines with them. So, I ordered a bottle of 2005 Trousseau “Grands Vergers” and knew that I had to contact Gahier the next morning.
The Gahier family has been resident in the Jura since 1525. The family domaine is 6.5 hectares with the vineyards concentrated in the village of Montigny-les-Arsures, the place recognized as the home of Trousseau. Michel Gahier has learned from the best. Gahier is a neighbor and friend of Jacques Puffeney, both living in Montigny-les-Arsures, a viticultural district that is acknowledged to produce some of the finest wines of the Arbois appellation. His observations and ongoing dialogue with Puffeney have instilled skills and sensibility that produce undeniably outstanding wines that clearly express the very particular terroir of this corner of the Jura.
Gahier harvests and vinifies his wines parcel by parcel. Each wine ultimately is derived exclusively from a single vineyard site. His whites are produced “sous voile”, although the “Les Crets” cuvée is less dominated by that process than the “La Fauquette” or the “Les Follasses” bottlings which spend considerably more time aging in barrel. The Savagnin and the Vin Jaune are both classic versions, a testament to the old traditions of the Jura where the whites are left in barrel without “topping up”. The reds are as mineral-driven as one could expect from the Jura, with a freshness and length that are compelling. The viticulture is organic (although not “certified”). The reds are destemmed; the yields are quite low (averaging 30 hectoliters per hectare). There is a period of cold maceration followed by a cuvaison of approximately one month with some pigeage done in the initial parts of the process. The wines, both white and red, are aged in old foudres and barrel. The wines are bottled without filtration.