How do you become a "new" Northern Rhone producer? In the case of Domaine Jolivet, it actually wasn't that hard. Bastien Jolivet inherited holdings that supplied a local coop. In 2014, he simply decided to retain the fruit and make his own wines.The holdings are frankly incredible. Northern Rhone geeks know that there is St. Joseph, and then there is St. Joseph. Now a 1200 hectare AOC, it was originally just 90 hectares before expansion in 1969. Those 90 hectares are very special.Within those 90 hectares, the most special site of all may be the steep granite slopes above the village of St. Jean-de-Muzols. This is where Trollat had his famous plot that now produces Gonon's Vieilles Vignes. And it is where Jolivet has his vines, including some that were planted in 1907 (he thinks to the Serine variant of Syrah; Jolivet is still conducting genetic testing to confirm this).Jolivet, fortunately, knows how to treat this amazing material: with a traditional hands-off approach that includes natural, whole cluster fermentation, and aging mostly in large used casks. His oldest vines go into a special Vieilles Vignes bottling, but even his regular St. Joseph comes from vines going back to the 1950s planted in St. Jean-de-Muzols.
Earthy , Herbaceous , Rich