CHATEAU-CHALON FRENCH WINE
The village of Chateau-Chalon dominates this wine region both literally and figuratively. It is 450 metres (1,476 feet) above sea-level, in the centre of the Jura, and gave birth to the king of all Jura wines, the vin jaune (yellow French wine), which is exclusively made from Savagnin grapes.
Vins jaunes may be made throughout the Jura but the best originates from Chateau-Chalon. This French wine is of the utmost highest quality and is not made every year. The preparation for making it in the village is the same as elsewhere for vins jaunes but the level of quality control is far higher.
Vins jaunes, including those of Chateau-Chalon are put in dumpy 62 cl clavelin bottles, since this is all that remains of a litre of-young wine after maturing for six years and three months in a cask. The clavelins of Chateau-Chalon are the only ones to bear a decorative red seal around their necks for the best French Wine.
L'ETOILE FOR FRENCH WINE
No-one knows precisely why this village got its name (etoile means star in French). It is probably due to the five encircling hills that together form the shape of a star, or the five beautiful castles in the neighbourhood. Perhaps though the name is derived from shells and star fish remains found in the chalky soil of the vineyards. Very high quality and highly regarded white and sparkling wines are made from about 80 hectares in this village for the good French Wine.
ARBOIS FRENCH WINE
The vineyards surrounding the pleasant small town of Arbois supply the greatest volume of wines from the Jura. That these 800 hectares can produce exceptional quality wines with their own character is shown by the fact that wine from Arbois was the first in France to be permitted to bear an Appellation d'Origin e Contralee.
The production is chiefly of white and red wine but some Pupillin rose is also made and this is good French Wine.
CÔTES DU JURA AND FRENCH WINE
A colourful collection of white, red, rose, and sparkling wines are covered by this appellation. It is astounding that so many different quality wines are made from such a small area.
The wholly Chardonnay white French wine is pale yellow and smells of fresh grapes. After two to three years maturing in casks it develops its characteristic flinty smell. Wines made with Chardonnay and Savagnin have an even more clearly pronounced terroir scent and flavour. Those of just Savagnin are above all very delicate and aromatic for a French Wine.
The Poulsard rose is elegant and subtle. Roses from this area often have a coral-like colour and are exceptionally juicy and full bodied. The red wine is quite peculiar. Made from Poulsard, it resembles a rose but is actually a true red wine. The scent and flavour are reminiscent of mould and wild fruits of the forest.
By contrast, that made from Trousseau is warm, full of tannin, rounded, and full-bodied with the nose of red fruit. It is strongly alcoholic and be kept until quite old.
SPARKLING WINE FROM THE JURA
The Mousseux and Cremant originate mainly from !'Etoile and Vemois. These are available in brut, sec, or demi-sec and in white or rose French Wine. They are made by the traditional method with a second fermentation in the bottle.