To the north of Arbois, in the commune of Port Lesnay in the Jura, you will find Catherine Hannoun’s Domaine de la Loue. Named after the Loue river that flows through her town and forms the unofficial northern border of the Jura, her small domaine has made a big name for itself, with her tiny production being exported all over the world.
Catherine moved to the Jura in 2008 after leaving her career working in film. She had worked on the documentary Mondovino, and it was her work on this project that ignited her passion for, and interest in natural wine. For a time after returning to the people and places that she had come to know during her time on Mondovino, Catherine worked for Emmanuel Houillon and then went on to purchase and lease her first vines and her cellar in 2009.
Catherine makes a wide range of cuvées, including oxidative and ouillé styles for her whites, Crémant and Pet Nat, Vin de Liqueur and Vin Jaune. White grapes are de stemmed and the reds see a mix of techniques, with partial de stemming alternating with whole bunches to create a layered system in the press, to semi carbonic maceration - and even some white grape skins having been known to be thrown in the mix for slower ferments! Elevage is completed in a mix of stainless steel and old oak.
The domaine is comprised of just over 3 hectares, and after making some changes to her holdings after the birth of her daughter in 2011, she now works with pinot noir, trousseau, chardonnay and savagnin of up to 60 years age, grown on a mix of grey marl, limestone, clay and calcareous clay, located in communes around Pupillin and Arbois.
Catherine farms organically, having converted some of the vines herself, and is certified by Ecocert. She eschews the use of any chemicals in the vineyard, uses select biodynamic practices and preparations, and even ploughs with a horse and a donkey in the vineyard.
Catherine is a firm believer in letting nature do its part, chemicals are not necessary - for the vigneron hard work will get the job done. After tasting her cuvées we can do nothing but strongly agree.