Caves Jean Bourdy

The Brothers of Caves Jean Bourdy

 


One of the oldest producers around, Caves Jean Bourdy has been making wine since 1475 in Arlay, Jura. We’re talking the Late Middle Ages. The mind reels. Currently run by 15th generation Jean Philippe and Jean-François, the brothers Bourdy make wine with respect to their tradition. Lucky for evolved-wine enthusiasts, the domaine has accumulated an impressive library of wines over the years and sells limited quantities of an array of vintages from the twentieth century, proving that Jura’s wines are brilliantly age-worthy. Caves Jean Bourdy haven’t changed their winemaking methods since the nineteenth century. Only old barrels are used, and many of them date back to 80 years ago.

About the Author

Pameladevi Govinda is a freelance wine and spirits writer based in New York City. She has contributed to Decanter, CITY, Vibe, Daily Candy, Cheers, Beverage Dynamics, Spain Gourmetour, Imbibe magazine and more. She is extremely passionate about low interventionist wines that speak of place and tradition. She writes about such wines on a regular basis for her blog, www.pamgovinda.com.
Jean-François tells us that that he isn’t against modern wines or new oak, but he doesn’t personally like those wines -- and because production is small (40,000 bottles per year, they can afford to make wines that are graced with the gift of time. “If we had to produce a million bottles, we might feel differently,” he said. They currently own 10 hectares of vineyards.

One thing has changed at Caves Jean Bourdy in recent years, though. They have been practicing biodynamics since 2005. Reasons for embracing the Steiner philosophy include reverence for the environment, and they’ve noticed the life and structure of their soil is healthier as a result.

Bourdy tells us that he recently conducted a tasting of the 1865 vintage of his domaine’s red and white Jura wines along with their Vin Jaune. He recounts how a group of international sommeliers deemed Caves Jean Bourdy one of the most unique domaines in the world, causing him to realize that, as the current generation, they cannot do better than their ancestors, but they believe they can do just as well. After tasting a range of their old vintage wines, we’re inclined to agree. If it ain’t broke don’t fix it.

Côtes du Jura Rouge 2005
This is their first vintage after practicing biodynamic farming. A blend of Poulsard, Trousseau and Pinot Noir, the wine is kept in old casks for 4 years. A graceful, balanced wine with powdery tannins.

Côtes du Jura Rouge 1952
Layered and complex with barnyard notes rancio, umami, iodine and classic Poulsard notes of citrus.

Côtes du Jura Blanc 2005
Made from 100% Chardonnay. Expressive, mineral and balanced.

Vin Jaune 2001
Vin Jaune must be aged for six years and three months in oak, without topping the barrels. The result here is a savory, yeasty and saline-mineral wine.

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Comments

  • Snooth User: dmcker
    Hand of Snooth
    125836 7,422

    I've always found the wines from Jura fascinating, and relatively good value, to boot. Recently I've been drinking more of their chardonnays.

    Thanks for the summary on Caves Jean Bourdy. Would be interested in any more tasting notes you'd care to share, with as much detail as possible.

    Jun 08, 2010 at 12:03 PM


  • Snooth User: dmcker
    Hand of Snooth
    125836 7,422

    Also, did you taste Bourdy's Chateau Chalon, or their Galant?

    Jun 08, 2010 at 1:20 PM


  • Sorry but the Auther of this story needs a wake up call !
    In the Republic of Moldova wine has been made for 7000 years.
    The Dacian people which are now the Romanian people first made wine some 7000 years ago .
    One of the oldest Moldvanian winery's is Hincesti with a history of making wine on site for 475 years .
    I also suspect that Cotnari winery in Romanian also has just as long of history .
    Then in the Republic of Georgia I also suspect some winery's also may have a longer history than Caves Men .
    It is quiet interesting that American writers never want to admit that wine has a very old history in Eastern Europe and was first made in Eastern Europe not in France first .
    A fact that also is never talked about when speeking of Moldovan or Romanian wines is France started to produce wine 4000 years after Moldova and Romania .
    Todays Moldavian wines would put to shane any French or Italian wines.
    Best Moldovan brands of wines .
    http://www.purcari.md
    http://www.vartely.md
    http://www.cricova.md
    Dk-Intertrade
    Lion Gri
    http://www.milestii-mici.md

    Jun 08, 2010 at 6:07 PM


  • Snooth User: frenchie1
    393608 510

    To Modovianwineimporter:
    The author did not say they were the oldest, just one of the oldest! You sound so defensive; perhaps you should just do a better job with the distribution of your wines before you make such a bold and boastful statement as :"Todays Moldavian wines would put to shane any French or Italian wines."
    Bring them on!!

    Jun 08, 2010 at 7:56 PM


  • Snooth User: frenchie1
    393608 510

    To Modovianwineimporter:
    The author did not say they were the oldest, just one of the oldest! You sound so defensive; perhaps you should just do a better job with the distribution of your wines before you make such a bold and boastful statement as :"Todays Moldavian wines would put to shane any French or Italian wines."
    Bring them on!! Oh and check your spelling and grammar; it goes to your credibility....

    Jun 08, 2010 at 7:57 PM


  • dmcker - Thanks for reading and responding. I did taste their Ch. Chalon (pretty amazing) but not Galant. Mostly tasted old vintages of Côtes du Jura. They really are very special wines. I am hoping they will be here next week for a Jura tasting that is taking place in New York.

    I'll be glad to email you the notes I have for the rest their wines tasted in the Jura. Feel free to email me at: mspdevi@mindspring.com

    Thanks!

    Jun 10, 2010 at 4:23 PM


  • Modovianwineimporter - I am humbled at the history of wines in Moldova. Having said that I in no way meant to suggest that Caves Jean Bourdy is THE oldest producer of wine, just ONE of the oldest. I would love to know more about your wines and I hope to see them imported into the US in the near future. Are they imported here?



    Jun 10, 2010 at 4:31 PM


  • Snooth User: Helen Poole
    1337036 29

    interesting

    Aug 30, 2013 at 6:00 AM


  • Snooth User: anvilpep
    1370081 34

    great

    Sep 24, 2013 at 12:59 AM


  • interesting

    Sep 27, 2013 at 2:28 AM


  • interesting

    Oct 07, 2013 at 12:15 AM


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