Domaine de la Loue: Catherine Hannoun

Catherine Hannoun of Domaine de la Loue produces excellent Jura wines from plots near Pupillin and Marnoz. Her Savagnin, from a plot near Pupillin is a real revelation. It is complex, pure and delicious!

Her domaine is named after the Loue river which rises from a spring slightly north-west of the town of Pontalier near the Swiss border and then snakes its way across the Jura to form the border between Doubs and the Jura.

We met Catherine at a salon in Paris and after trying her delicious wines were eager to import them to Australia. We were delighted that she agreed even though she only farms approximately 3 hecatres, so has very little wine.

Catherine became intrigued with winemaking when working as a producer on Nossiter’s famous film about the wine industry called Mondovino. She moved to the Jura in 2009 and began making wine after converting some vineyards to organic.

Domaine de la Loue Arbois Pupillin AoP Savagnin 2017

This is a pure Savagnin made from a plot of land called Sous Roche near the village of Pupillin close to Arbois. The vines are now thirteen years old and grow in grey marl clays which are on a slope that faces east south-east.

The grapes for the 2017 cuvée were harvested by hand in September 2017, direct pressed and then underwent natural fermentation in stainless steel tanks. After fermentation was complete, two-thirds of the juice was transferred to old 220 litre barrels. The juice was transferred back to the stainless steel tank one month before bottling (August 28, 2019). The wine was not fined or filtered and no sulphur was added.

The grapes for the 2018 cuvée were harvested by hand in September 2018, direct pressed and then underwent natural fermentation in stainless steel tanks. After fermentation was complete, half of the juice was transferred to old 600 litre barrels. The juice was transferred back to the stainless steel tank one month before bottling (February 11, 2020). The wine was not fined or filtered and no sulphur was added.

RRP: $70

Domaine de la Loue Le Blanc 2018

Le Blanc is a cuvée made from 100% Chardonnay grapes harvested from the communes of Pupillin, Marnoz, Aiglepierre and Buffard. Pupillin is a few kilometres south of Arbois and the other three communes are to the north. The age of the vines varies from 6 years to 60 years old.

The grapes were picked in September 2018 and were pressed directly and the juice placed in a stainless steel tank to undergo fermentation. When fermentation was complete 50% of the juice was transferred to old wooden barrels.

One month prior to bottling (which occurred on February 11, 2020) the jiice in the barrels was transferred back to the stainless steel tank.

This is a wonderful wine where the fruit has been preserved and it shines through in the glass!

RRP: $58

Domaine de la Loue Le Rouge 2018

Le Rouge is a wine that is a blend of Trousseau (95%) picked in the Buffard commune as well as a little Ploussard, Trousseau à la Dame and Chardonnay.

The grapes were picked in September 2018 and then macerated for 7 weeks with the first 40 centimetres of grapes destemmed, then the next 40 centimetres whole bunch and so on to create what Catherine calls a millefeuilles! The grapes were then pressed and the juice transferred to stainless steel tanks. The fermentation was still active during the 2019 harvest so she added some Savagnin skins to liven it up.

The wine was bottled in February 2020 without any fining, filtration or addition of any sulphur.

Catherine recommends that Le Rouge is poured into a carafe before serving.

RRP: $53

Domaine de la Loue La Bulle Bleue 2016

La Bulle Bleue is an absolutely delicious sparkling cuvée made from 100% Chardonnay grapes harvested from the communes of Pupillin, Marnoz, Aiglepierre and Buffard. Pupillin is a few kilometres south of Arbois and the other three communes are to the north. The age of the vines varies from 6 years to 60 years old.

The grapes used in this were picked in September 2016 and direct pressed and transferred to wooden barrels for fermentation and maturation for 24 months. The second fermentation occurred in July 2018 after bottling. The bottles were disgorged in December 2019.

RRP: $60

Domaine de la Loue Pet’Nat’ Rosé 2018

Unlike the La Bulle Bleue sparkling described above, this one is a Pet Nat that has undergone only one fermentation.

The Pinot Noir grapes where picked in the commune of Molamboz which is about 14 kilometres north-west of Arbois where the vines benefit from limestone clays. The vines are approximately 36 years old and face south-east.

The grapes were picked in August 2018 and directly pressed then transferred to tanks for the fermentation to begin. When the fermentation had caused the sugar levels to decrease to a safe level (usually around 20 grams of residual), the fermenting juice was bottled.

The bottles were left to finish fermenting over winter and were then disgorged by hand in late January and early February. The bottles were then placed rested in the winery for 12 months to stabilise.

The result is a pale pink, very low alcohol (9%) sparkling wine that is a perfect drink for an aperitif or for a late night palate cleanser!

RRP: $67

Domaine de la Loue Vin de Liqueur

Catherine was keen to produce this traditional fortified wine which is so beloved in the Jura. It is made from a harvest of some of her best Savagnin grapes in the commune of Pupillin where the 14 year old vines grow in grey marl with east to south-east exposure.

The Marc that is used to fortify the wine must be made in the winery and it had spent two years in wooden barrels. The Marc was 54% alcohol and when added to the wine brought the overall percentage down to 18%.

The resultant wine was left to mature for four years in wooden barrels to soften out into this fabulous drink.

We only have a very small number of bottles of this fortified wine.

RRP:$90

Domaine de la Loue La Brute 2018

La Brute is a wine that is made entirely from Pinot Noir, one of the Jura’s approved red grape varieties sourced from one of her vineyards in the commune of Molamboz. The vines here are 36 years old which is a perfect age for producing profound wines.

The exposure of the vineyard is South West and the soils consist of calcareous (derived from limestone) clays. The grapes were manually harvested and placed in small crates in September 2018.

The vinification was semi-carbonic with the grapes being placed in a steel tank in layers (or millefeuilles) as Catherine likes to call it. The first layer was about 40 cm thick and consisted entirely of whole bunches. The next layer was also 40 cm and consisted of destemmed grapes. This pattern was repeated until the tank was full.

The grapes were then macerated for 6 weeks, then taken out of the tank and pressed, then the juice returned to the stainless steel tank.

The wine was bottled in August 2019 without any fining, filtration or addition of any sulphur.

Catherine recommends that La Brute is poured into a carafe before serving.

RRP: $47 (SOLD OUT)