Jansz winemaker reveals her favourite sparkling
Jansz vigneron Jennifer Doyle admits she's lost her heart to Tasmania.
The Orange-born winemaker recently celebrated five years working at one of the most highly regarded sparkling wine houses in Australia. She says she has fallen in love with both the vineyards she tends and her new island home.
The winner of the Viticulturist of the Year award at the 2017 Women in Wine awards (AWIWA) works between Jansz’s three vineyards: Pipers River, Coal River Valley, and Forcett.
She sat down with Drinks Bulletin at the Intercontinental Double Bay to take us through the six sparkling wines in her portfolio: Jansz Tasmania Premium Cuvee NV, Jansz Tasmania Vintage Cuvee 2013, Jansz Tasmania Vintage Rose 2013, Jansz Tasmania Vintage Cuvee Late Disgorged 2010; Jansz Tasmania Single Vineyard Vintage Chardonnay 2011 and Jansz Premium Rose NV.
Each wine was paired with flavours the avid foodie believes bring out the best in them and to prove that sparkling wine is more than just an apertif.
When asked if she had a "favourite child" among the six, Doyle admits to a soft spot for the Single Vineyard Vintage Chardonnay 2011, which she suggests pairing with oysters.
Very pale golden, with an exceptionally fine bead, the wine's palate has layers of citrus flavours, crystallised lemon and lemon curd overlaid with roast almond nougat.
However, Drinks Bulletin favoured the Vintage Rose 2013, which has a pale colour that Doyle compares to Argyle pink diamonds. The nose is fragrant and expressive with aromas of rose water, quince blossom and strawberries, overlaid by notes of truffle and sweet broiche. We sip it together while dining on lemon myrtle cured Tasmanian salmon, with celeriac, red vine sorrel and salmon caviar.
Another striking wine in the line up is the Vintage Cuvee Late Disgorged 2010, which features intense notes of preserved lemon and sea spray with flavours of caramelised pear, truffled honey and roasted hazelnuts. It is paired with a slow-cooked egg benedict style with avocado and white truffle oil.
Doyle is generous with her knowledge of the sparkling wine process she dubs "Methode Tasmanoise". In the style of Methode Champenoise, it requires a secondary fermentation in the bottle, which creates the bubbles in sparkling wine. A small amount of yeast and sugar is added before the bottle is sealed with a crown cap. The yeasts starts fermenting the sugars, producing alcohol and carbon dioxide. Since the gas cannot escape, it dissolves into the wine.
At Jansz, the bottles are then turned upside down so the yeast can settle in the neck, where it is frozen and removed before corking.
Doyle favours a drier style of sparkling wine, which extends to all six of her expressions.
The tasting concludes with a wine that Doyle describes as "a fun one" - Jansz Tasmania Premium Rose NV - which is paired with a dessert of citrus fruits, raspberries and fizz rocks. It's vibrant wine with a delicate pink hue, a subtle nose of Turkish delight and rose petal florals.
A lovely end to the meal, but our hearts still belong to the Vintage Rose 2013.
It's little wonder Jansz's Parish Vineyard, at Penna in the Coal River Valley, recently won the Royal Agricultural Society of Tasmania 2018 Tasmanian Vineyard of the Year award.
Doyle's site management, nutrition of fruit and disease control all contributed to it taking out the award.
“The Jansz Parish Vineyard and the environment around it is a special place, one we love and are proud of," she said.