Say Jurassic Park and you instantly conjure images of being chased by voracious dinosaurs.
But Jurassic has another, much more benign connotation, especially for wine lovers. The wines from Jura are called Jurassic, because the origins of the soil can be traced to the Jurassic era. Some people would even say that Jura wines-at least the traditional, oxidative wines- are a kind of a dinosaur that have no place in today’s world.
Specifically ‘vin jaune’ is the dinosaur, a wine that has been allowed to evaporate in the barrel and magically a fungus (euphemism- flor) flourishes on the surface and allows some oxygen while protecting the wine. This is a process that has been common in the Jura for centuries and some people may think of sherry and its flor. Well, you are absolutely correct. It’s the same mysterious process and the taste is reminiscent of sherry.
So if you like dry sherries, you’ll love oxidized Jura wines- if you can find them. There’s a great article in today’s Wall Street Journal (3/28/15) by LettieTeague and I thank one of our May Jura wine tour participants for pointing it out to me.