The appellation is located in the precursors of the Pyrenees in the southwest of the region Southwest France, It is partly coincidental with the appellation Béarn, Probably there was already around 2,000 years ago at the turn of the century viticulture, which suggests Roman mosaics from this period. Already in the 14th century were passed by decision of the Parliament of Navarra the vineyards of this area are defined as special vineyards (crus). Among other things, it was also forbidden at that time to introduce foreign wines. This can be understood as one of the first attempts at classification or protected designation of origin. Incidentally, Jurançon was classified as one of the first French areas as AOC in the late 1930s. Supposedly, the King of Navarre Anton von Bourbon (1518-1562), at the baptism of his son and later king and great wine lover Henry IV (1553-1610) whose lips have wetted with it.
The fact is that the wine from Jurancon established itself as standard wine for solemn ceremonies of the French ruling house. He was then produced in red and white. The phylloxera destroyed at the end of the 19th century mostly the vineyards, but then there was a re-stocking with the old grape varieties. The Jurançon was extensively exported to Holland and as far as the Americas. The well-known French writer Sidonie-Gabriele Colette (1873-1954), author of "Chéri" and "Gigi" wrote about him: "As a young girl I made the acquaintance of a prince - fiery, bossy and treacherous like all great seducers: Jurançon " . This of course contributed to the glory of the wine.
The vineyards cover approximately 1,000 hectares of south-facing slopes at 300 to 600 meters above sea level with a relatively cool climate. The vines are up to two feet high in the training system Espalier raised, which protects against the ground frosts. The long, sunny autumns allow a very late harvest until December. Similar to the sweet Sauternes wines, the traditional Jurançon version is a concentrated, sweet white wine made from overripe or dried grapes (see also below) Passerillé ). This is especially good the small-berry and thick-skinned grape Petit Manseng which yields extremely low yields (often only 15 hl / ha, admittedly 40 hl / ha). Only under these conditions can a high-quality sweet Jurançon emerge. In small proportions are too Courbu Blanc. Camaralet de Lasseube. Gros Manseng. Lauzet and Petit Courbu contain.
The heavy wine also has a nice, balanced acidity and is very long-lasting. As a separate Apperllation Jurançon sec was classified in 1975. This is a dry variant of the varieties Gros Manseng and Courbu Blanc. This wine can also be produced in bad weather years and accounts for about three quarters of production. Both wines have a characteristic, greenish glow that deepens with aging. Well-known producers are Domaine du Bellegarde, Clos Bellevue, Domaine Bordenave, Domaine de Cabarrouy, Domaine de Capdevielle, Domaine Castéra, Domaine Cauhapé, Domaine Gaillot, Clos Guirouilh, Château Jolys, Cru Lamouroux, Clos Lapeyre, Domaine Larredya, Domaine Nigri and Clos Uroulat ,