Christophe Menozzi

Christophe Menozzi at Château de Germigney ©Brett Jones

The first time that I met Christophe Menozzi was a few years ago when he ran a small hotel restaurant in Doucier in the heart of the Jura. Later we enjoyed a great meal as well as a fascinating tasting of various Jura wines in his restaurant in Besançon.

A decade ago Christophe won a string of sommelier awards whilst he was still working in Switzerland including the Ruinart best sommelier of Suisse Romande in 1999, best sommelier of Jura Franche Comté in 2000 and Maitre Sommelier de France in 2001.

At the beginning of September we visited him in his new role as sommelier at the Michelin-starred hotel and restaurant Château de Germigney in Port Lesney, 10 miles north of Arbois.

Dapper, dedicated and diligent Christophe is a great ambassador for the wines and food of the Jura. His knowledge of the intriguing wines of this region, his ability to pair their great variety of flavours with local, national and international dishes is matched by his awareness of all that goes on in the Jura.

Very hard working he always has time to encourage others, sharing his enthusiasm for colleagues, customers and friends alike.

He is also a good interviewer, discussing the whys and wherefores with locals and visitors to the region. I just happened to bump into Christophe in March at Le Nez dans le Vert, a celebration of organic Jura wine, and you can see the resulting short video by Vins du Jura.


Julian Castagna

Julian Castagna at the Real Wine Fair 2012, London ©Brett Jones

Earlier this year in London there were two wine fairs featuring Organic, Biodynamic and Natural wines. One was Real and the other, Raw.

Both provided a great opportunity to taste idiosyncratic and characterful wines from all over the world, as well as meeting a number of wine producers – also idiosyncratic and characterful!

The Circle of Wine Writers organised a seminar at the Real Wine Fair, which ‘explored the viticulture and vinification of natural, organic and biodynamic wines’. It was fascinating to hear from each member of the panel how they viewed and worked with these disciplines.

One of them was Julian Castagna, who is a keen advocate of biodynamics at their winery situated at an altitude of 500 metres five-and-a-half kilometres outside the beautiful town of Beechworth in Northeast Victoria, in the foothills of the Australian Alps.
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