J'Noon Akluj India White Wine 2016  £28.95

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J’NOON is a joint venture between Kapil Sekhri of Fratelli wines and Jean -Charles Boisset. The name is a French take on the Urdu word “Junoon”, which means “passion”. The aim of Jean-Charles and Kapil was to produce India’s finest wine, and we think they’ve achieved that.

J’NOON’s vineyards span 95 hectares over three sites in Akluj (Mahārāshta), on the right bank of the Nira River. The climate in this region is sub-tropical but the altitude of 650 metres allows the grapes to rest at night and retain freshness and acidity. The fruit for this wine comes from the Garwar Plot G site where the well-draining, low nutrient soils are predominantly made up of sand with a high rock content.

Unlike warmer regions in India, temperatures in the Mahārāshta are moderate enough to only produce one harvest a year which drastically improves quality. 2016 proved to be warmer than previous years resulting in a slightly earlier harvest than was anticipated: the five-day Chardonnay harvest beginning on the 2nd of January with the Sauvignon Blanc commencing a day later.

The grapes were processed and vinified separately. Following destemming the Chardonnay was barrel fermented in new French oak barrels before undergoing malolactic fermentation prior to 12 months oak ageing, whilst the Sauvignon Blanc was fermented at 15-18°C for 7- 10 days and aged in stainless steel tank with no malolactic fermentation allowed. The wines were then blended prior to bottling.

This wine exudes classic Chardonnay characteristics of green apple, white pear and stone fruit alongside fresher, more vibrant lime, lemongrass and herbaceous characteristics of the Sauvignon Blanc. The oak has imparted sweet woody notes and a creamy texture to the wine but the finish is undeniably dry and steely.


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