Katie Jones Blanc is a white wine made in the Languedoc wine growing region of Southern France. It is a blend Grenache Blanc, Grenache Gris and Macabeu (Macabeo). This is part of a range of wines made by Katie Jones of Domaine Jones fame. It should not be confused with the Domaine Jones Blanc, this is made from purely estate fruit whilst the Katie Jones Blanc is made using some bought in fruit.
It is now nearly 10 years since Katie bought her first vineyard in the Languedoc and since then she has gained a loyal following for her Domaine Jones red and white wines, her Fitou and the superb La Perle Rare Syrah. The Apres La Pluie Rosé has also recently made a re-appearance.
Katie was the Sales and Marketing Director for the Mont Tauch co-operative in the Languedoc for nearly twenty years until she fell in love with a small 3.5 hectare vineyard in the Maury Valley in 2007. The vineyard, in the shadow of Queribus Castle and surrounded by wild scrub or garrigue, consists of over 8000 vines on slopes of black schist planted with Carignan, Grenache Noir, Grenache Gris and Muscat. The vines are here are predominantly over 70 years old. The vine age, altitude and stony, slate soils produce naturally very low-yielding vines. The lower the yield, the higher the quality. The wine-making philosophy at Domaine Jones is to employ traditional, down-to-earth farming methods and innovative winemaking techniques to capture the characteristics of the terroir and the local area.
Vineyards planted with white grape varieties are quite rare in the village of Tuchan where Katie is based, most have been replanted with red grape varieties, but Katie keeps buying up any old vine (at least 50 year old vineyards she can find). Since she started Katie now uses some non-estate fruit including fruit from her husband’s vineyard: Jean Marc Astruc and his family have been growing grapes in Tuchan for generations.
As mentioned Katie Jones Blanc is a blend of Grenache Blanc and Grenache Gris (70%) and Macabeu (30%). The grapes are hand-harvested and chilled overnight prior to a gentle pressing. Alcoholic fermentation is low temperature and slow and takes around 3 weeks. The Grenache component is aged in used, small, French oak barrels for 6 months. Katie Jones Blanc is bottled as a Vin de France.