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Jura

The Jura wine region lies in eastern France between Burgundy and Switzerland with the Saône River very near. The climate is continental, long cold winters and hot summers with mostly limestone soils. Jura is one of the smallest regions in France and there are five principal appellations, but most of the wines are coming from Arbois and Côte du Jura. As well five are the grape varieties which are commonly used in the region, as three of them are traditional and two are Burgundian grapes. Poulsard also called Ploussard, is commonly planted in Arbois and Pupillin appellations, used for dry reds and also rosé sparkling wines. It is a red grape with very thin skins with light colour pigment and very low tannin content. The wines are very pale and are often mixed with a little Pinot Noir for colour. The wines are fragrant, delicate and best consumed young. The other indigenous red grape in Jura is Trousseau, mostly planted in Arbois, shines with full-bodied and fruity characteristics and complexity. The most famous white wine grape is called Savagnin which produces the well known Vin Jaune or yellow wine and the wines of the village Château-Chalon, both made in the traditional oxidated style as a specialty of Jura. Another very unique and rare wine is Vin de Paille or straw wine which has been made by drying grapes until Christmas to create one of the most complex sweet wines in the world. The other two grape varieties are Chardonnay which accounts probably for the half of the produced white wines in the region and the Pinot Noir used mainly for blending, although there are some very good varietal examples. The Chardonnay is the primary grape for the increasingly popular sparkling appellation, Crémant du Jura together with Poulsard. A tiny appellation only for white wines called L'Etoile makes exceptional Vin Jeune where the rich limestone soils are full of a star like fossils.

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