The SOMM Journal

August / September 2018

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Page 51 of 124

{ } 51 In each issue, the editorial team at The SOMM Journal will deliberate through wine submissions and release final judgment on select wines that garnered scores of at least 90 points. The "joury" will also feature an esteemed guest sommelier. The 100-Point Scores from the Côte d'Or JCB Gin ($125) is enhanced by the native flora that grows in the Biodynamically farmed vineyard gardens on the Boisset property. Dandelion, cham - omile, lemon balm, and more than 40 other botanicals (including 30 organic plants) are infused into this London Dry–style gin. Essence of sunflower, lilacs, and verbena come to life on the nose as the liquid, dotted with white pepper and caper berries, melts across the palate. Violets thread through the herbs for a spring-garden effect throughout. 100 JCB Truffle Vodka ($150) is a true Earth Mother. More for - est than garden, the Périgord black truffles infused into the base spirit bring out umami notes that evoke a savory tonality. On the nose, magnolia and blue lilac come through with a lushness so broad that we took some time for reverie before the first sip. De - spite the whisper of truffle, jasmine, rose petals, blueberry, and vanilla caramel all shine through on the lengthy, voluptuous palate. 100 JCB Caviar Vod- ka ($150) We've ventured from garden to forest and now to the sea, where this vodka captures merroir, or marine terroir. Aromas of anise and cocoa warm the nose, and there is a definite, re - splendent scent of sea breeze guiding the way to the deeper palate flavors. Creamy licorice coats the tongue, dark chocolate brings a hint of saltiness, and tobacco leaf emerges boldly on the finish. It's easy to see this spirit is blessed by a unique infu - sion of ingredients: Caviar, Chardonnay, and Pinot Noir may have been a concoction conceived by Neptune himself. 100 WE FOUND PERFECT BALANCE IN BURGUNDY-BORN JCB SPIRITS THE JOURY WAS just minutes into tasting Jean-Charles Boisset's newest spirits project, JCB Spirits, when we reached our unanimous verdict: giving all three a weighty sentence of 100-point scores. Hand-harvested, sustainably farmed grapes—mostly Demeter certified Biodynamic— from Boisset's estate vineyards in Burgundy make up the blend of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir used as the base spirit for three vodkas and one gin. It's a 15-year project for Jean- Charles, whose Boisset Collection includes more than 25 wineries and vineyards through - out Burgundy and California. "We had the luxury of time—we never rushed to make this," Boisset told The SOMM Journal. "The wait has been so exciting, because it's finally released." After the varieties were fermented separately, the grapes aged for six months in barrel before blending, then rested an additional two months for the flavors to meld before distillation. The base spirit was distilled seven times and then filtered four times, resulting in its preternatural, silky mouthfeel. There's no vintage designation, but these inaugural, small- production releases originated from Burgundy's 2012 harvest. The inimitable Jean-Charles Boisset. PHOTOS: JEREMY BALL

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