"Claré J.C. is a Nebbiolo made according to a 1606 note by Gian Battista Croce, the jeweler of the House of Savoia. This wine is a time-capsule into an era when Nebbiolo wines tasted fresher, slightly crisp and smooth. This is a wine for people who are young at heart and curious about the forgotten past of Piemonte." -- Giuseppe Vaira
DESCRIPTION: Claré JC is a unique wine, our take on the forgotten days of Nebbiolo, when it was enjoyed in its lighter and fresher garment. The winemaking protocol follows the 1606 writings of G.B. Croce, jeweler of the House of Savoia: the wine is bottled soon after the fermentation so to retain a gentle off-dry finish and a lovely energy. 2019 vintage gifted Claré JC some vibrant, spicy and profound aromas.
VARIETY: 100% Nebbiolo.
VINEYARD AND TERROIR: Fruit from our young vineyards.
GROWING: In 1971, Aldo Vajra, then still a university student, was one of theearliest to adopt organic farming in Piemonte. Vineyards have been nurtured, and soil preserved, by grassing and spontaneous cover crop for almost 50 years now. They are sustainable and organic certified. With an incredible ratio of manual work per hectare, farming at Vajra is a labor of love and “recipe-free” attention. Intense research is also placed into monitoring and improving the biodiversity of both flora and fauna not just in the vineyards, but also in the winery fields and forests.
VINTAGE: 2019 was marked by an early bud burst, late flowering and a slow and progressive ripening that turned this vintage into one of the longest and
latest of the decade. Early winter snows and moderate rain falls throughout the year preserved the water reservoirs and laid the conditions for a balanced phenolic ripening. Thankfully, the Langhe were spared from both the April frost and the dramatic heat of late June, albeit a severe hailstorm hit our vineyards on September 5th. Low yields from flowering, slow ripening with late harvest dates, excellent maturity profile and great acidity spine - all of these factors remind of the 2013 seasons and indicate the potential for a truly remarkable and classic vintage.
HARVEST AND WINEMAKING: Nebbiolo for 2019 Claré JC was picked between October 7th and 9th. Approximately 20% of the grapes were fermented as whole clusters. After a short maceration, the wine was racked into a pressurized vat (autoclave) to finish fermentation off the skins, for a gentler extraction.
AGING: Very short aging prior to bottling, on January 27th 2020.
"Wow, the 2019 Vajra Clare JC explodes from the glass with masses of crushed raspberry and strawberry fruits, complicated by sweet and savory herbs, along with crushed stone minerality. On the palate, fleshy textures are quickly firmed up by a mix of tart red berries, with zesty acids, a slight frizzante spritz, and a coating of liquid violet florals. The finish is long and lightly structured, displaying a lasting and unmistakable note of red licorice with hints of spiced orange. This is wonderfully expressive and bridges the gap between Red and Rosé; please pour me another. Of note, the 2019 Claré JC was gently fermented with about 20% whole cluster fruit with malolactic completed in stainless steel, hence the perceivable effervescence." - Eric Guido, vinous.com - 92 points (May 2020)