Region: Beaujolais, France
Vinification: Carbonic Maceration into fiber glass tanks
Notes from the Importer: After a couple of harvests abroad and numerous years of wine school, Justin broke ground on his own label in 2015. Thus far, he’s spent most of his adult life working for his famous father, Jean-Louis Dutraive, and like his father’s wines, his are gentle and fun, with seriousness brewing within. Thankfully, this apple didn’t fall far from the tree.
Wise beyond his twenty-two years, Justin openly shares his ideas with his legendary dad and follows his advice every step of the way. The relationship between them is one of mutual respect and admiration, so they seem like very good friends and are an absolute pleasure to be around.
Justin managed to lease a few parcels of remarkable vines with Jean-Louis’ help, one within the Beaujolais Village appellation, below the town of Fleurie, and another parcel within one that Jean-Louis is well-known for: La Chapelle des Bois. At one point during my first visit to Justin’s vineyards, Jean-Louis and I watched Justin expertly work his way through the vines on his tractor. Jean-Louis was smiling and clearly filled with pride as he talked about the great work his firstborn son was doing.
All of the momentum in popularity that has built up for Beaujolais over recent years has brought about an exciting time in the appellation. And while it’s great to see newfound attention for the once quietly sung legends such as Lapierre, Metras, Foillard, and Dutraive (the elder), there’s really nothing more exciting than watching the rise of a new batch of talented and idealistic young winemakers who let their respect for nature guide them in their craft.