Definition - What does Vin Jaune mean?
Vin jaune (French for yellow wine) is a type of dry wine made in the Jura region of France, and is famous all over the world for its extreme concentrations and different flavors. The flavors range from smoky to yeasty and contain intense acidity. The wine has been traditionally made in a temperature controlled fermentation tank and stored for a period of six to seven years before qualifying as vin jaune. The layer of yeast protects the wine from the air.
Vin jaune is made from savagnin grapes, mostly found in the Jura region.
WineFrog explains Vin Jaune
The wine shares many similarities with fino sherry, including rare aromas but unlike sherry, vin jaune is not a fortified wine. Vin Jaune gets its characters from being barrel-aged under a layer of yeast, called voile, on the wine’s surface.
Vin jaune wine, considered by many as the best type of wine in the world, is made entirely from savagnin grapes. These grapes are commonly harvested late in the appellations of Arbois, Cotes de Jura, Etoile and Chateau-Chalon.
The origin of the savagnin remains unknown, with many claiming that it is a wild variety brought into wine production. Vin jaune wines or the vins de garde as it was historically known, are known to age well and contain an alcohol level of 13-15%. After being stored for the requisite time of six years and three months, the vin jaune acquires its characteristic nutty aromas and yellow color. After the allocated time, the only 62% of the original wine remains, so the vin jaune is bottled in special 62 cl (centiliter) squat bottles called clavelins.