Have you heard of Katie Jones? The English winemaker who fell in love with the rugged beauty of the southern French countryside, started her own winery and nearly lost everything. Quite frankly her name should appear in the Oxford English Dictionary under 'Invincible'.
Katie began working in the Languedoc in the 90's as the sales director for a cooperative and was so utterly won over by the endless potential of this terroir and its unique wines, she decided to stay and open her own winery; Domaine Jones was born. Katie began buying small parcels of vines around Maury in areas that offered many challenges for the viticulturist due to their low yielding old vines and rugged landscape. In 2009 she released tiny quantities of her first wines which were received with multiple awards and applause. Following this success she turned her eye to the village of Tuchan and acquired another: "We set out to prove that Fitou doesn't have to be supermarket wine,' says Jones. 'The potential for quality wines down here is enormous."
Katie has small parcels of Carginan, Grenache, Syrah, Lledonar Pelut (also known as Hairy Grenache), Grenache Gris, Grenache Blanc, Muscat and Macabeu. The vineyards are hard to reach and must be tended to by hand; soils include schist, limestone and clay. All the vineyards are kept separate during vinification and to accommodate this Domaine Jones recently bought and renovated an old train shed from 1905. The Grenache Noir, which sits in anticipation of being discovered on our shelves at OWC, is bursting with lively fruit! Nothing but those delicious ripe berries went into the fermentation tank, a two day cold soak followed by a low temperature 10 day fermentation has produced a wine with the pure expression all Grenache lovers will be swooning for.
Also available from OWC is Domaine Jones Syrah, from 3 small vineyards in Tuchan. Only 1200 bottle produced so get yours before they disappear!
Domaine Jones has faced many challenges, least of all is the painstakingly laborious care of the vines and land; Katie has received threats, hate mail and spiteful vandalism. But just like her old vines Katie's roots are deep and strong. Together with her husband Jean Marc, Domaine Jones continues to make exceptional wines filled with gumption and a sense of their homeland.