The Tasting Panel magazine

June 2017

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Page 49 of 116

june 2017  /  the tasting panel  /  49 And so, to add some authenticity and to tell more about JP. Chenet's ebullient personality, the company underwent a refresh. Gone were the staid names in red and black against a khaki background. In their place came a line of labels that play off the very barrel-aging process itself. While the winery has retained the specific shape of the bottle, they also hope they've added modernity to the label. While the eight wines that comprise the original series— a Cabernet-Syrah, Merlot, Grenache-Cinsault, Merlot Rosé, Colombard-Sauvignon, Sauvignon Blanc, Colombard- Chardonnay and Chardonnay—continue to appear under the original label, the Réserve wines received a refresh. JP. Chenet developed a genuine wood label to recognize and honor the work of house winemaker, Florence Delabre, and to distinguish the Merlot-Cabernet, Pinot Noir and new exclusive two-varietal Chardonnay-Viognier of the Réserve line. Playing off the nuances in vintages and vineyard selections, each label is also unique. While one bottle might be striated or lightly colored, another might reveal a slight knot or the sign of a whorl. It's as if the barrel has found a home outside the wine, and on the packaging. Shaking things up isn't new for JP. Chenet. In addition to the early invention of the Joséphine, the winery has stepped boldly into different containers. In 2000, it firmly entered the bag-in-box model, put- ting the Cabernet-Syrah, for example, in three-liter pouches. They also added larger sizes to complement the standard 750 ml. On the wine and spirits front, JP. Chenet launched its first sparkling wine in 2004 and a brandy in 2009. Through it all, the winemaker has "worked hard to enhance the qualities of the wine with every vintage," says Adeline Gilgert, JP. Chenet Marketing Manager for the United States. That includes working closely with the farmers who cultivate grapes for the winery in Languedoc-Roussillon and Gascony, in the south of France. She further followed that research in the field into the winery, paying close attention to tank fermentations and blending trials, all in hopes of better distinguishing one vintage from another. And now, as it celebrates its 33rd birthday, JP. Chenet has that brand new look to reveal. Tactile wooden label and all. Florence Delabre, JP. Chenet Réserve winemaker. Gone are the staid names in red and black against a khaki background: JP. Chenet's packaging gets a refresh. PHOTOS COURTESY OF JP. CHENET "Through it all, the winemaker has worked hard to enhance the qualities of the wine with every vintage."

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