Oh beautiful fresh and fruity Beaujolais! Though this can be said of most Beaujolais, not all are created equal and this region shows an incredible range of styles – due to location and winemaking techniques.
The Beaujolais region is a continuation of Burgundy. Here Pinot Noir gives way to Gamay growing on limestone soils. Beaujolais ranges from a very simple, light and fruity (but dry) red ready to drink upon release to fuller, more complex age-worthy reds. Regardless of style – these wines always show bright red fruits and lovely fresh acidity.
Beaujolais is classified as follows from the simple to the most complex:
The well-known Beaujolais Nouveau fall into this category. These wines are released on the third Thursday in November, right after harvest. Nouveau wines should be consumed within the year of harvest and are made mostly by partial carbonic maceration- a gentle winemaking process that enhances the fruit and gives cherry, bubblegum, banana flavours to the wine. Basic Beaujolais may have been made with partial carbonic maceration or more traditional winemaking methods. These wines are fresh, fruity with vibrant acidity and minimal tannin, not unlike Pinot Noir.
Beaujolais Villages AC
There are 39 villages that can attach their name to the Beaujolais Villages appellation. In those areas, Gamay vines grow on granite schist and grapes from various villages are blended together or a specific village name may appear on the label.
Beaujolais Cru AC
10 vineyards have been identified for their special qualities. Traditional winemaking is more common in the vineyards and occasionally oak will be used.
- Saint Amour
- Cote de Brouilly