Domaine de La Vieille Julienne

The Story

Jean-Paul Daumen, the 5th generation owner and winemaker of Vieille Julienne, is one of the most intriguing and influential winemakers in France. Despite being at the top of his field, he remains a committed student of wine; he is curious to no end and completely open to new ideas. Being around him is a pleasure as he speaks of what he is doing through questions and conversations rather than a dictation of his philosophies.  He is in a rarified group of winemakers who have a vision and achieve it to the slightest detail every vintage. These are a must if you are serious about southern French wine.

Jean-Paul embraced biodynamics when he took over the family estate in 1990. He is not evangelical about his beliefs but it is clear that his farming method abandons all herbicides, fungicides, fertilizers and chemical products used in the vineyard and avoids all unnatural additions (including cultured yeasts) in the cellar, save SO2 which is only added before bottling. It best said on Jean Paul’s website, “the climatic conditions, the sun, atmospheric pressure, the effects of the moon and the planets, are as many parameters that seems obvious to take into consideration.” Biodynamic farming method is a couple of steps beyond an organic practice and is often called a holistic approach to grape growing and winemaking.

Lay of the Land

The soils that remain in Châteauneuf-du-Pape were brought in by the Rhône when it was a torrential river that covered the entire river delta of Provence. There is a large amount of calcium in the soil that seems to be overlooked when you see pictures of the alluvial quartzite galets in the vineyards from this very famous region. Underneath these rocks are more layers of strata of rocks that are separated by rich clays and sand.

There are five distinguished regions, Avignon, Bédarrides, Courthézon, Orange and Sorgues, that have many different soil structures and microclimates. This diversity offers an array of complex and different styles of wine. This sunny and windy area of France gives some of the most endowed and fully expressive wines. They can be unapologetically masculine wines that, with age, can carry very fine table manners.

Cotes du Rhone Rouge lieu-dit Clavin

Domaine de La Vieille Julienne - 2017 Côtes du Rhône Rouge, ‘lieu-dit Clavin’

Price: $33.00
Size: 750ml
Availability:

24+ in stock

Type of Wine: Red
Style: Rustic, Medium Body

Inside the bottle: This wine leaps out of the glass upon opening, showing off its whopping 23% alcohol with dense notes of cherry popsicle, chocolate gelato, burnt gopher holes and the finish of punget smells of a horse’s… whoa!! Do people really think this way about wine? I hope not, maybe it’s just those wine critics. Well, it’s not really 23% alcohol, popsicles, gelato and the other strange animally things… One thing is for sure with this wine from Vieille Julienne and that is this wine is definitely not your average Cotes du Rhone. It is strikingly fresh with loads of red fruit and savory characters. The freshness of the wine is sharpened with a piercing aroma of white pepper, earth, clove and anise. Red and lavender flower fully emerge only shortly after opening. It is a mistake to drink quickly, so take your time on this one.

Terroir: This is Jean-Paul’s oldest vineyard, with vines that are beyond 100 years old. It is also the parent material for the parcels within his Chateauneuf vineyards. Indeed, this wine is not a Chateauneuf-du-Pape but it has a tendency to drink like one. The truth about Clavin is that there is a mere twenty-foot wide road that separates his Chateauneuf vineyards from this particular “lieu-dit”(a phrase meaning literally “place name”), Clavin. Jean-Paul thinks in some years Clavin can be better than his Chateauneuf, which commands three to four times the price. The wine is made of nearly 80% Grenache with the rest divided between Mouvedre and Syrah. Sulfites are added at the end of its year in foudre, just before bottling. The wine is neither fined nor filtered.

The Wine

Inside the bottle: This wine leaps out of the glass upon opening, showing off its whopping 23% alcohol with dense notes of cherry popsicle, chocolate gelato, burnt gopher holes and the finish of punget smells of a horse’s… whoa!! Do people really think this way about wine? I hope not, maybe it’s just those wine critics. Well, it’s not really 23% alcohol, popsicles, gelato and the other strange animally things… One thing is for sure with this wine from Vieille Julienne and that is this wine is definitely not your average Cotes du Rhone. It is strikingly fresh with loads of red fruit and savory characters. The freshness of the wine is sharpened with a piercing aroma of white pepper, earth, clove and anise. Red and lavender flower fully emerge only shortly after opening. It is a mistake to drink quickly, so take your time on this one.

Terroir: This is Jean-Paul’s oldest vineyard, with vines that are beyond 100 years old. It is also the parent material for the parcels within his Chateauneuf vineyards. Indeed, this wine is not a Chateauneuf-du-Pape but it has a tendency to drink like one. The truth about Clavin is that there is a mere twenty-foot wide road that separates his Chateauneuf vineyards from this particular “lieu-dit”(a phrase meaning literally “place name”), Clavin. Jean-Paul thinks in some years Clavin can be better than his Chateauneuf, which commands three to four times the price. The wine is made of nearly 80% Grenache with the rest divided between Mouvedre and Syrah. Sulfites are added at the end of its year in foudre, just before bottling. The wine is neither fined nor filtered.

About The Wine

Inside the bottle: This wine leaps out of the glass upon opening, showing off its whopping 23% alcohol with dense notes of cherry popsicle, chocolate gelato, burnt gopher holes and the finish of punget smells of a horse’s… whoa!! Do people really think this way about wine? I hope not, maybe it’s just those wine critics. Well, it’s not really 23% alcohol, popsicles, gelato and the other strange animally things… One thing is for sure with this wine from Vieille Julienne and that is this wine is definitely not your average Cotes du Rhone. It is strikingly fresh with loads of red fruit and savory characters. The freshness of the wine is sharpened with a piercing aroma of white pepper, earth, clove and anise. Red and lavender flower fully emerge only shortly after opening. It is a mistake to drink quickly, so take your time on this one.

Terroir: This is Jean-Paul’s oldest vineyard, with vines that are beyond 100 years old. It is also the parent material for the parcels within his Chateauneuf vineyards. Indeed, this wine is not a Chateauneuf-du-Pape but it has a tendency to drink like one. The truth about Clavin is that there is a mere twenty-foot wide road that separates his Chateauneuf vineyards from this particular “lieu-dit”(a phrase meaning literally “place name”), Clavin. Jean-Paul thinks in some years Clavin can be better than his Chateauneuf, which commands three to four times the price. The wine is made of nearly 80% Grenache with the rest divided between Mouvedre and Syrah. Sulfites are added at the end of its year in foudre, just before bottling. The wine is neither fined nor filtered.