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Zoe Crittenden
8 July 2022 | Zoe Crittenden

Comté and vin jaune: An Australian winemaker's tribute to Jura

Read Max Allen's article published in The Australian Financial Review on Friday, 8 July 2022.

Read the full article here.

You will enjoy reading the full article, but we'd like to share a few snippets with you prior to the release of our Cri de Coeur wines in August 2022.

The first vintage of the Sous Voile savagnin at Crittenden Estate was in 2011, and it came about by accident - or rather, by expedience.

Back in the early-2000s, the Crittendens - like dozens of other Australian winemakers - had planted a few rows of a promising alternative Spanish white grape variety called albarino at their Peninsula vineyard. Except it wasn't albarino. In 2009, a visiting French grapevine specialist broke the news to them at what they had in their vineyards was in fact savagnin. From the Jura.

But Crittenden Estate assistant winemaker Matt Campbell knew what to do with the now correctly identified grapes.

"It was serendipitous," says Campbell. "I'd tasted vin jaune on a trip to France a few years before: visiting a friend one day. I was sitting on the swing in the back garden when her in-laws brought out this Comté and a bottle of vin jaune. I tasted them together and thought holy crap, what's this?"


Which is why, in 2011, Campbell left a barrel of the Crittenden dry white savagnin un-sulphured, which encouraged a veil of flor yeast to grow on the surface of the wine inside the cask.


Not surprisingly given its unusual character, Sous Voile [savagnin] is a wine that took time to build a following. But recent vintages have attracted serious critical acclaim. The 2016 was named Best Drink in Australia at the 2021 Drink Easy Awards in Adelaide, judged against other wines, spirits, beers, etc - and it now sells out every year, with demand outstripping supply.

“It’s been amazing,” says (Rollo) Crittenden. “Absolutely amazing. As a wine that started out as a mistake, it’s one of the greatest mistakes that has ever happened to us.”













2017 Crittenden Estate Cri de Coeur Savagnin Sous Voile
Despite the extended ageing "under veil", this wine is still bursting with plenty of gorgeous grapey, tangy savagnin fruit, all intense fleshy yellow peach and a line of citrus, with the yeasty flor notes more a background hum than foreground feature. Beautiful now, but will also age gracefully: the 2013 is slowly becoming more savoury, more complex, developing layers and layers of yeasty flavour, with years ahead of it, and I see the 2017 maturing in a similar way.

2020 Crittenden Cri de Coeur Chardonnay
It wasn’t only savagnin-based wines that we tasted with Jacques Reymond’s food: this vivid, lemony chardonnay was also exquisitely paired by the chef with a dish called La Pôchouse, from the chef’s village of Cuiseaux in Jura – a perfectly baked piece of John Dory in a sorrel sauce, the just-set richness of the fish proteins and tanginess of the sharp-tasting sorrel a perfect match with the wine.

Crittenden Estate Cri de Coeur Macvin #3
This is the third release of the Crittenden version of Macvin, a sweet-yet-savoury wine served as an apéritif or with dessert in Jura. The Crittendens make theirs by blending dry, flor-aged Cri de Coeur savagnin with fresh golden savagnin grape juice, adding a little neutral spirit, and ageing the resulting blend in barrels before bottling. Raisiny and caramel-rich, but also a little briny and yeasty, thanks to the flor component, it was lovely with Reymond’s Macvin-flavoured crème brulée. It’s also great with a Vache Qui Rit toastie.

Time Posted: 08/07/2022 at 9:15 AM Permalink to Comté and vin jaune: An Australian winemaker's tribute to Jura Permalink
Zoe Crittenden
17 February 2022 | Zoe Crittenden

Top 100 Australian Wines

Our Cri de Coeur came in at number 76 out of his top 100 Australian wines.

Pretty good! James Suckling is a US wine writer - and is very well respected. To make his top 100 is a great achievement. This is what James had to say:

Rollo Crittenden is not afraid to play the long game, and so he nestled this wine under flor for three years in untopped barrels, a mode known as “sous-voile” in France’s Jura region.  The result is a wildly complex yet precise white that has clear, savory, flor-derived characterwith lemon peel and toasted almond. Fragrant dried brown spices, too. The palate rings  clear with a fresh flush of acidity and briny, mineral tones to the zesty lemon flavors, aheadof a smoothly nutty twist to close. So much to like here. Drink now. 96 points


James Suckling

TOP 100 Wines of Australia 2021



Time Posted: 17/02/2022 at 2:02 PM Permalink to Top 100 Australian Wines Permalink
Zoe Crittenden
30 November 2021 | Zoe Crittenden

Shakespeare in the Vines - 14 March 2022

Tickets are now on sale for our annual Shakespeare in the Vines Production here on the lawns overlooking the Crittenden Estate lake.

We will be hosting Essential Theatre for our fifth year for the production "As you like it". Picnic food available when you book or BYO hamper. No BYO drinks....Click here for bookings and further information. 

Time Posted: 30/11/2021 at 3:19 PM Permalink to Shakespeare in the Vines - 14 March 2022 Permalink
Zoe Crittenden
18 October 2021 | Zoe Crittenden

Wine Centre reopening

After announcements yesterday regarding reopening of the state we are delighted to be welcoming guests back for tastings and onsite sales on Saturday 23rd October.

We'd encourage customers to book for their tasting online or by phoning 5987 3800. Come and see our cellar door refurb and makeover - photos coming soon! 

Time Posted: 18/10/2021 at 1:36 PM Permalink to Wine Centre reopening Permalink


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“Beautiful spot for wine tasting - and lovely wines. We had an excellent time with Ben who taught us a lot about their wines and made the experience fun. Great value getting the premium wine tasting selection.”

ANISHA, May 2022

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