Ganevat Throws a Curve Ball: 2003 Ganevat Vin Jaune

Posted by Joe Salamone

Challenging Preconceived Notions
2003 Ganevat Vin Jaune

Sometimes you get thrown a curve ball.

That's pretty much what happened with Ganevat's 03 Vin Jaune...

Last summer, Ganevat's distributor sent a list of his wines to order from. I saw his 02 Vin Jaune - a wine I knew was killer - and ordered a bunch.

It wasn't until this March that I was confirmed on quantities, and when I reviewed the confirmation, I noticed 2003, instead of 2002 Vin Jaune. Ganevat had sent 03 instead of 02.

It was a huge disappointment, at first. I hadn't tasted any Vin Jaune from 03 that I'd liked. They were exactly as you'd guess - too low in acid, a little (or a lot) too caramelized.

Ganevat's distributor wasn't pressing me to take it. It was out of fairness, yes, but Ganevat sells without much effort anyway.

The deal I worked out was that we'd take a case to taste it and decide what to do from there. It arrived; we waited a few days, pulled the cork and then, tracked it over three days.

And... It was really, really good. I blind tasted the staff, tasted a customer or two, etc. and everyone was impressed, or make that beyond impressed. More than one of my colleagues asked: "Can we get more of this?"

It was impossible not to be surprised by the wine's freshness and acidic drive. It's exactly what you'd expect from Ganevat, but exactly what you would not expect from the 03 vintage.

In fact, the acidic thrust of the wine felt like a blatant challenge to preconceived notions about the vintage. The flavor profile was too - it was full of citrus, moss, mushrooms and a radiant brightness.

That's pretty much the story and why we're offering the wine today.It simply merits your attention for its intensity, its freshness and for being yet another example of why Ganevat is one of the best winemakers we know. (Please look here for more on Ganevat.)

We've tried to keep the price as low a possible to encourage you to try it - at $89.95 we're working very lean. In reality, this should be $100 or more a bottle. And it's worth it at that price.

This is a wine that I've found myself fascinated by. It has impressed me deeply.

The only time where you sense the 2003 vintage is in the wine's power and concentration, especially in the breadth and force of the mid-palate. The mid-palate is mind-blowing in its intensity, in its explosion of flavor. Like all of Ganevat's wines, his 03 Vin Jaune shows a striking purity. There's a crystal clear expression to the wine.

The ageability of Vin Jaune is legendary with bottles seeing their 100th birthdays. Ganevat's 03 promises to age very well on its freshness and concentration.

Just to be transparent here, I'm not "on the hook" for this wine. I plan to order based on the response to this offer, take some for the store, and be done with it. What I don't take will get sold elsewhere without much difficulty.

This is simply a wine that's worth buying, drinking, and engaging. It's a testament to an incredibly skillful winemaker at his best. It takes the good of a vintage and leaves the bad, creating something deeply memorable. Is there higher praise?

To order, please email us at or call the store at (212) 980-9463.

Joe Salamone
Wine Buyer
Crush Wine & Spirits