Fabrice Dodane studied wine-making in Beaune as a young man. He went on to work at the cooperative in Pupillin for a few years before landing a job with Domaine de Saint Pierre as winemaker and manager in 1989. In 2011, he was able to purchase the estate due to the untimely death of the owner and has since added more vineyards to the mix, currently farming 7.5 hectares in the Arbois and Côtes du Jura appellations. Having begun the organic transition process in 2002, the domaine’s vineyards were certified by Ecocert beginning in 2008.
Beginning in 2012, he has honed his wine-making style considerably eschewing the use of sulfur except when absolutely necessary. All wines are fermented using only indigenous yeasts in either stainless steel tanks (red) or 400-600L oak puncheons (white). Whites are aged in either the traditional sous voile (oxidative) or ouillé (topped-off or Burgundian) methods. Because of the minimal use of sulfur in the wine making, the wines generally go through malo-lactic fermentation.
We began tasting Fabrice’s wines thanks to mutual restaurant friends in Beaune and became hooked immediately. His wines had rapidly become darlings of the natural wine scene in Paris, New York, and Japan because they possess a unique balance between easy drinkability and clear transparency of site and soil. It didn’t take long for us to see why.
In recent years, due to increasingly short crops in the Jura due to spring frosts, Dodane has expanded his horizons to include purchasing grapes from friends farming to his exacting standards both in the Jura and in other regions. Le Dos d’Chat is the lineup of “Glou Glou” wines that show a particularly deft hand. They are mostly vinified using whole clusters and an absolute minimal use of sulfur during the wine-making process.