François Jobard is as quiet as they come. He has been making top rate Meursault for 50 years in a very understated way, starting work with his father in 1957. However tastings at the domaine have become a little more voluble, since 2002 when son Antoine joined François, the label mentioning both names. This quiet and unassuming grower has nearly 5 hectares of vines in Meursault and produces a minuscule 2,000 cases a year. From 2007 the design has changed and the name has evolved to Domaine Antoine Jobard. But Clint Eastwood look-alike François has still been in evidence when I go to taste at the domaine.
The winemaking is traditional here - Jobard abhors the excessive use of new oak and extended lees stirring which he feels merely serve to flatter the wines when young, yet add little to their long-term ageing potential. If you like Meursaults that are big, broad and oaky, and are as yellow as French headlights, then this may not be the domaine for you. However, if you like Meursaults that are taut, mineral, complex and refined, then François Jobard is your man. Like their maker, his wines reflect an unhurried restraint, competence, dedication and precision, giving them complex and elegant characteristics.
His wines are not flamboyant but are graceful and steely and display astonishing mineral intensity and finesse. François Jobard wines taste superb in the barrel but then need years in bottle before they show their qualities. They are aged in barrel for two years and then bottled with a reasonably heavy dose of sulphur to ensure their longevity at the expense of youthful charm. Probably the key to this style though is the decision not to settle the solids out of the juice before it goes to barrel for fermentation. Antoine does not intend to make significant changes, except to the label, though there will surely be some fine tuning. Already the wines are bottled just a few months earlier, to avoid a second summer in barrel.
Their small plot of Blagny rouge which always made a rather austere wine has been pulled out and replanted with chardonnay so the domaine is now entirely white.
Jasper Morris MW, Burgundy Wine Director and author of the award-winning Inside Burgundy comprehensive handbook.