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Henri Jayer (Winemaking, Best Wines 2021)

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Brent Akamine
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Looking to add some Henri Jayer bottles to your collection?

If you love fine red Burgundy wines, Henri Jayer is a must-have in your cellar! After all, it’s from some of the best terroirs of the iconic wine region, at par with Domaine de La Romanée-Conti (DRC.) 

Given their famously low production quantities, it’s a good time to start collecting these precious fine wine bottles. 

In this article, find answers to all your questions about Henri Jayer’s history, winemaking style, and their top 10 wines in 2021. You’ll also find a super simple way to begin investing in wines like these. 

Further reading

Don’t start buying fine wine before reading this in this insightful guide.

This article contains:

(Click on the links below to jump to a specific section)

  1. 1978 Henri Jayer Richebourg Grand Cru
  2. 1982 Henri Jayer Echezeaux Grand Cru
  3. 1985 Henri Jayer Richebourg Grand Cru
  4. 1985 Henri Jayer Nuits-Saint-Georges Les Meurgers
  5. 1987 Henri Jayer Richebourg Grand Cru
  6. 1992 Henri Jayer Vosne-Romanee Beaumonts
  7. 1993 Henri Jayer Cros Parantoux
  8. 1999 Henri Jayer Cros Parantoux
  9. 2001 Henri Jayer Cros Parantoux 
  10. 2001 Henri Jayer Nuits-Saint-Georges

All About Henri Jayer

All About Henri Jayer

Henri Jayer was a French winemaker famous for revolutionizing the Burgundy winemaking style and creating some of the world’s priciest wine. He was born in 1922 in a family of winemakers. 

Jayer forged this distinctive luxury Pinot Noir red wine brand in a career spanning over six decades. He died in 2006, aged 84, after releasing his last vintage in 2001.

Let’s find out more about this Burgundian legend. 

Read more: Try out some of the best Malbec wines that makes you go ‘Mamma Mia’!

A Brief History of Henri Jayer Wine

Brief History of Henri Jayer Wine

Different members of the Jayer family have been making wine in Cote de Nuits, Burgundy since before the 1920s. Henri Jayer’s father moved to the region right before World War I.

In 1945, Henri entered a contract with the Noirot Camuzet family, who let him make wine under his label with 50% of the grapes while he tended to their properties in the area. This turned out to be the partnership of a lifetime. 

He not only built a steady reputation for himself with his label but also started buying small patches of the renowned Vosne-Romanee Cros Parantoux vineyard. This property was part of Domaine Meo Camuzet. 

The vineyard was considered by many to be too high maintenance with poor soil quality and very little limestone. But ever the visionary, Henri Jayer recognized the land’s value. 

He tended to the land for years and finally, in 1978, released the first Clos Parantoux vintage in his name. This was a defining moment in Henri Jayer’s long and illustrious career. 

He continued making this wine well into the ‘90s. In 1995, he passed the vineyards onto his nephew, Emmanuel Rouget. All vintages since 2001 have been released under Rouget’s name.

The family’s private collection went to Jayer’s daughters. 

Read more:

Book your vacations to these historic wine regions:


The Henri Jayer Vineyards 

The Henri Jayer estate is located in his birthplace, Vosne-Romanee, a tiny wine village between Dijon and Beaune in the Burgundy wine district. It has some of the finest vineyards in the Cote d’Or region.

This has been his base of Henri Jayer’s operations since the early ‘40s.

Over the years, the French vintner expanded from the original three hectares of land he inherited to include patches of the neighboring premier cru vineyard. Together, these landholdings produce the following wines:

  • Echézeaux Grand Cru: Made with grapes from Les Cruot and Les Treux vineyards
  • Richebourg Grand Cru: Mostly made with Les Verroilles’ produce. It’s one of the rarest Henri Jayers and the last vintage was made in 1987.
  • Nuits-Saint-Georges Premier Cru, Les Meurgers: Named after the stony terrain before the parcel was planted
  • Vosne-Romanée 1er Cru Les Brûlées: Named after the French word for ‘burnt’ as the grapes tend to become overripe on this land, right below the premier cru Cros Parantoux and Richebourg vineyards. However, the wine retains balance and acidity. Jayer’s last vintage for this Cuvee was in 1987. 
  • Henri Jayer’s Vosne-Romanée Village: Made with the produce from Les Saules, Les Barreaux, and Les Vigneux parcels
  • Vosne-Romanée 1er Cru Beaumonts: Produced from a tiny 0.23 hectares holding in the estate

Henri Jayer Viticulture and Innovative Winemaking

Henri Jayer Viticulture and Innovative Winemaking

Henri Jayer’s wine philosophy revolved around meticulous care for the land and vines rather than a dependence on chemicals. He worked on improving soil quality and kept the yields low. Pinot Noir grapes were harvested at optimal maturity levels, and Henri personally supervised grape selection. 

Read more: Become varietal-savvy by reading all about wines from these grape types: Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Blanc, Riesling, Barbera, and Zinfandel.

Most Burgundian winemakers crush the grapes with the stem when the harvest is low in tannins. 

Not Jayer. 

He destemmed every grape to keep out their bitter, green character out of the wine, allowing tannins to develop slowly throughout the vinification process. 

Moreover, he introduced the ‘cold maceration’ technique before fermentation, allowing the must to rest at around 10-15°C for 4-5 days. 

Such natural flair for winemaking and a deep-set passion helped Henri Jayer craft memorable wines, year after year. 

Why Should You Invest In Henri Jayer Wine?

Why Should You Invest In Henri Jayer Wine

Henri Jayer holds a special place among investment wines just like many other wines from the Burgundy appellation.

The personal attention and care he showered on each vintage meant that Henri Jayer’s production was extremely limited. He was known never to cross the 3500 bottle threshold each year. 

This means, each year, a number of Henri Jayers go out of the market and are hard to get hold of. 

So if you own a bottle from a vintage crafted by the man himself, you’re in luck. Especially if you secured an ‘01, his last vintage wine. Even rarer are his earlier vintages from the late ‘70s or ‘80s, few of which remain in private collections. 

Moreover, like any fine Burgundy wine, a Henri Jayer ages well up to four decades. You can hold on to the bottle till you find the right buyer and quote your price! 

Henri Jayer wines are easily some of the most expensive from Burgundy and consistently perform well at wine auctions as well. 

In 2018, Baghera wines organized the biggest auction of Henri Jayer’s wines ever, with 209 magnums for sale. At this event, 15 magnums of Henri Jayer Cros Parantoux 2001 sold for over 1.2 million USD

The Baghera wines auction is proof that Henri Jayer stands shoulder-to-shoulder with legacy houses like Domaine Romanee Conti at auctions. And its average price keeps going up as the number of bottles dwindles. 

Henri Jayer’s nephew Emmanuel Rouget and the Meo-Camuzet family make wine on the same land and with similar techniques. And though their wine is worth collecting, they don’t command the high prices that Jayer’s did. 

All of this is a reason to hurry and grab a magnum of Henri Jayer!

Read more: Brainstorming fun ways to have wine? Try making a Champagne cocktail or a Kir Royale with some Rose wine.

10 Best Henri Jayer Wines In 2021

Here’s our pick of the most sumptuous and precious Henri Jayers through the years. 

1. 1978 Henri Jayer Richebourg Grand Cru

1978 Henri Jayer Richebourg Grand Cru

This wine’s deep red and vivid complexity tells the story of the years it spent maturing in cellars. It was one of Henri Jayer’s early vintages and, therefore, a great wine to inaugurate this list! 

Find dashes of citrus, rose, and leather in the aroma of this rich and spicy wine.

Price of 1978 Henri Jayer Richebourg Grand Cru: $37,404 

2. 1982 Henri Jayer Echezeaux Grand Cru

1982 Henri Jayer Echezeaux Grand Cru

The ‘80s gave us some of the best Henri Jayers ever. The Echezeaux ‘82 is a fine example of this trend. The fragile yet resilient wine expresses itself on the palate in a bouquet of black truffle and ferrous notes. 

Price of 1982 Henri Jayer Echezeaux Grand Cru: $7,132

3. 1985 Henri Jayer Richebourg Grand Cru

1985 Henri Jayer Richebourg Grand Cru

The robust tannins of the ‘85 are a result of Jayer’s ‘cold maceration’ technique and aging in oak barrels, lending it a mocha flavor. But these are balanced by the intense Pinot Noir fruitiness.

The wine’s long finish makes it an irresistible favorite among wine lovers.

Price of 1985 Henri Jayer Richebourg Grand Cru: $27,201

4. 1985 Henri Jayer Nuits-Saint-Georges Les Meurgers

1985 Henri Jayer Nuits-Saint-Georges Les Meurgers

Dominated by red fruit aroma, the ‘85 from Le Meurgers vineyard in Nuits St George is meant to be served chilled. Pair its tannic intensity with a superb meal of game birds or duck.

Price of 1985 Henri Jayer Nuits-Saint-Georges Les Meurgers: $4,835

5. 1987 Henri Jayer Richebourg Grand Cru

1987 Henri Jayer Richebourg Grand Cru

This elegant wine was among the last of the illustrious ‘80s. It reflects flavors of semi-sweet chocolate, leather, and soft cherry. Its long finish leaves you with subtle citrusy notes. 

Price of 1987 Henri Jayer Richebourg Grand Cru: $17,238

6. 1992 Henri Jayer Vosne-Romanee Beaumonts

1992 Henri Jayer Vosne-Romanee Beaumonts

Ripe fruit, soft tannins, and a healthy acidity introduce you to this exquisite wine. It is deep ruby red and full of mind-boggling complexity. 

Price of 1992 Henri Jayer Vosne-Romanee Beaumonts: $6,005 

7. 1993 Henri Jayer Cros Parantoux

1993 Henri Jayer Cros Parantoux

Mulberries, blackberries, and black truffles come together in an intoxicating aroma of this wine. 

The long finish leaves you with hints of tart cherries.

Price of 1993 Henri Jayer Cros Parantoux: $20,441

8. 1999 Henri Jayer Cros Parantoux

1999 Henri Jayer Cros Parantoux

Fruity. Creamy. Intense. This wine from Jayer’s flagship vineyard is reminiscent of fine oolong tea. It has a dessert-like character without being over the top.  

Price of 1999 Henri Jayer Cros Parantoux: $21,926 

9. 2001 Henri Jayer Cros Parantoux 

2001 Henri Jayer Cros Parantoux

Henri Jayer’s career's last vintage is emblematic of his winemaking legacy and a lesson in craftsmanship for all wine lovers. 

It draws you in with its rosy red color and red fruit aromas. Slowly, the wine reveals finely tuned minerals and then erupts into a sensory experience for the ages.  

Price of 2001 Henri Jayer Cros Parantoux: $16,368

10. 2001 Henri Jayer Nuits-Saint-Georges

2001 Henri Jayer Nuits-Saint-Georges

This medium-bodied, dry red wine is the perfect inauguration to the 21st century. Watch out for black forest fruits, leather, and an elegant, long finish. 

Price of 2001 Henri Jayer Nuits-Saint-Georges: $3,761

Read more: Use only the best Champagne glass for your dinner party. And learn what wine brands and accessories make the best wine gifts!

Invest In Henri Jayer Wines Via Vinovest

Vinovest

Vinovest is a trusted wine investment platform and the easiest way to source, manage, and grow a portfolio of investment-grade wines.

How does it work?

Start wine investing with these five simple steps:

  1. Create a Vinovest account with your name, email, and password.
  2. Fill out a questionnaire about your investment appetite.
  3. Fund your account with a minimum of $1,000.
  4. Let Vinovest build your portfolio of wines.
  5. Watch your investment multiply over the years.

Benefits of wine investing via Vinovest

1. Easy buying and selling

Buy and sell the best wines from every major wine region of the world, from Burgundy and Bordeaux to Hong Kong and New York - easily! All thanks to Vinovest’s superior AI-driven platform.

2. Best prices

High prices are no reason to let go of a chance to own an exquisite Chateau Lafite or Mouton Rothschild. Because Vinovest gives you fair pricing by protecting you from additional costs like fees for agents, and brokers, and retailer markups. 


Sounds better than buying a rare Jayer from an auction house, right?

3. Curated portfolio

You’re not alone on this journey. Vinovest’s master sommeliers, financial analysts, and a proprietary financial model will help you make the right decisions for your portfolio.

4. Authenticity and provenance checks

You’ll buy wines only after detailed provenance and authenticity checks on each bottle.  

5. Low overall costs

Don’t waste money or valuable real estate to build an expensive wine cellar. 

Vinovest will help you avail of warehouse services at 80% lower prices than anyone else. Moreover, a fixed 2.85% annual fee covers buying wines, authentication, storage, a full insurance policy, portfolio management, and selling the wine bottles. (This goes down to 2.5% if you invest more than $50,000.)

6. Tax advantages

There is no excise duty or VAT on Vinovest’s bonded warehouse facilities.

7. Easy delivery

Your precious Pouilly-Fuissé is just a call away. Vinovest will securely deliver them whenever you want them - be it to your home or to your buyer’s.

8. Deep network

Your Vinovest account is a gateway to the world of wine. Get invited to exclusive winery visits, events, and receive regular industry updates. 

9. Ownership

And you own every bottle from your fine wine portfolio, giving you an endless list of reasons to celebrate! 

Henri Jayer: The Dean Of Burgundy Winemakers

The Dean Of Burgundy Winemakers

Few winemakers enjoy a cult status during their lifetime. Henri Jayer was one of them. His innovative and exacting techniques have impacted French winemaking significantly. 

A bottle of Henri Jayer wine comes with its fair share of history and investment-worthiness. And now you can own it. 

Simply sign up on Vinovest today - and, invest in fine wines like Henri Jayer through this safe, hassle-free platform. 


Further reading

Step into the world of fabulous Red Wines in This Incredibly Useful Red Wine Guide!

Written by

Brent Akamine

Brent is a serial entrepreneur bringing nearly 20 years of experience from senior roles TrueCar, ByteDance and more. He led the US re-launch/re-design of the TikTok App and was also design director at Blockfolio.
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