From: Jura, France
Taste: In the glass, the 2021 Ploussard offers a delicate balance between the traditional and the innovative. Its pale color belies its depth of flavor, producing an earthy, gamy flavor profile that surprises and delights. It strikes a fascinating balance—almost a cross between Gamay and Frappato—with its refreshing notes of wild strawberry, cranberry, red currant, hibiscus, and spice, all underlined by a light earthiness.
Pairing: This ultra-light-bodied red is a wonderful choice for a wide array of culinary delights. Its refreshing acidity, coupled with its unique balance of earthy and fruity notes, renders it an incredibly adaptable companion to many dishes.
For a quintessential French experience, try it with jambon and beurre baguettes. The wine's lightness will not overpower the simplicity of the baguette, while the ham's saltiness will beautifully offset the wine's tangy fruit profile. It is also an exceptional match for a spread of charcuterie and fromage, savory tarts or quiche, and mushroom omelets (see recipe below), where the earthy notes of the wine echo the mushrooms' umami flavors.
Other ideas for pairing include serving this gem alongside a traditional roast turkey and gravy, as well as turkey and cranberry leftover sandwiches. A dish of slow-roasted chicken, strawberry and spinach salads with walnuts, and vinaigrette, as well as richer dishes like morel mushrooms in a white sauce with croutons, pan-fried crab with tamarind sauce, herb-encrusted roasted chicken, veal chops, vegetable stews, roast pork with milk, and trout almondine also pair splendidly.
For an outdoor meal, the 2021 Frédéric Lornet Arbois Ploussard would make an amazing 'brunch wine' or a perfect picnic wine. It's light and refreshing enough for daytime drinking and pairs effortlessly with a wide range of picnic foods.
Mushroom Omelet With Chives
By Martha Rose Shulman
About. The world of wine is a journey of constant exploration and discovery. Even the most knowledgeable aficionados continually uncover new tastes and experiences, as the art of winemaking is an ever-evolving field. One such experience is a glass of the 2021 Frédéric Lornet Arbois Ploussard, a product of unique terroir, dedicated craftsmanship, and an illustrious family tradition of winemaking.
Hailing from the Arbois AOC in Jura, France, the Frédéric Lornet winery crafts wines from the indigenous Ploussard varietal—also known as Poulsard—which makes up 40% of the reds grown in this region. The Ploussard grape has long been cherished for producing pale reds and rosés, including Crémant and Vin de Paille, offering an intriguing and enchanting wine profile. However, the grape is also known for being site-sensitive—particularly to the region's gray/blue marl—and prone to disease, making it a challenging yet rewarding grape to cultivate.
The story of the Lornet family began with Eugene Lornet, a cooper and winemaker. His son, Roger, was among the first Jura producers to bottle Arbois wines, introducing this previously obscure French region to the broader world of wine. Today, the legacy of Eugene and Roger continues through Frederic Lornet, who is shaping the future of the Jura region by producing both elegant red and white wines.
Frédéric Lornet’s vineyards sprawl across two appellations. With 15 hectares in the Arbois AOC, spanning Montigny-les-Arsures and Arbois, and 5 hectares in the Côtes du Jura AOC, based in the town of Salins-les-Bains. Most of these vineyards are planted on the strong marls typical of Jura, taking full advantage of the region's unique geological features.
The winery's remarkable location—in a 13th-century Cistercian abbey—provides an atmospheric backdrop to the painstaking work undertaken in the vineyard and cellar. The marl soil, coupled with the vineyards' south and southeast orientation, guarantees optimal grape maturity. A blend of traditional methods and modern technology, including controlled fermentation temperatures and diligent pruning practices, ensures that the resulting wines capture the full character of the Jura terroir.
Frédéric's lineage of coopers has given him an acute understanding of the selection of the best tuns and barrels for aging his wines. This attention to detail extends to maintaining the health and vigor of their grape varieties, primarily Ploussard, Savagnin, Chardonnay, and Trousseau, through massal selection—a method that involves replanting new vines from old vine cuttings.
After fermenting in stainless steel vats, the 2021 Arbois Ploussard ages in oak barrels for 9 to 12 months. The result is a wine that tantalizes the palate with a blend of history, culture, and the remarkable flavors of the Jura region.
Yet, understanding this wine also requires a step back into history, as it speaks volumes of Jura's past and present. 50 years ago, Jura was a forgotten region tangled in diseased vines, yet it patiently rebuilt itself. Today, thanks to pioneering winemaking families like the Lornets, it stands proudly on the world stage, offering wines of astonishing diversity and character.
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