2012 Jaune, Savagnin
St. David's Bench Vineyard | VQA — St David's Bench$50 375mL Bottle | $600 Case
Paul Bosc and Amélie Boury's Winemaker's Notes
Savagnin Jaune is made from extremely ripened Savagnin grapes placed in a Burgundian ageing barrel of 228 liters for 6 years and 3 months. What is especially unique in the winemaking process, aside from the extended aging time, is that the barrels are not stored in a stable cellar environment, instead they are stored in spaces which are well ventilated and subject to temperature fluctuations. Our two barrels were placed in the press room, where the temperature fluctuates with the seasons.
The barrel is never topped off as it is done throughout the traditional winemaking process, which allows a yeast film to develop in the barrel, called “le gout du jaune” or voile. It is very challenging to maintain the quality of the wine and keep the voile intact during the 6-year aging process and if the film is torn, the contents of the barrel are destroyed.
After 6 years in barrel, more than 40% of the initial volume has evaporated, this is referred to as the angels share. Due to the low production, the wine is bottled in a 375 mL bottle.
The resulting wine is a beautiful, golden yellow colour which can deepen to amber as it is aged. It has a unique flavour of walnut, dried fruit, spices and burned bread and has a high level of acidity.
Miguel Fontalvo's vineyard manager's Notes
Savagnin is a rare vinifera native to the Jura region of France that we’ve been growing in Niagara since 1993. We only have 10 rows planted on our St. David’s Bench Vineyard on the west side of the Château so this wine is very rare. We are fortunate to be able to work with the St. David’s Bench Vineyard. It’s an incredible site. Because it is so far from the lake and nestled against the Escarpment, we are able to achieve full maturity and ripeness on our grapes due to the long growing season. We do a lot of hand-work in the rows to help the vines concentrate flavours. The grapes used to make our Savagnin Jaune were harvested in 2012, which was an incredible vintage in Niagara.