Understanding Beaujolais

The grape gamay needs to be promoted. That is the opinion of Inter Beaujolais, which, according to, now encourages the producers to mention the name of the grape on the back label. Gamay is not found in many other places (a little bit in the Loire Valley, in Switzerland and a few other places) and in Beaujolais it also gets a specific character that it does not get anywhere else. Inter Beaujolais also want the ten Beaujolais Cru villages to mention the name Beaujolais on the label.

Road sign to Julienas, Beaujolais

Road sign to Julienas, Beaujolais, copyright BKWine Photography

There are many consumers that do not associate Morgon, Moulin-à-Vent and Fleurie with Beaujolais. Which is perhaps a pity. Simple Beaujolais could benefit from the prestige that surrounds many of Cru wines. And a third measure that Inter Beaujolais would recommend their growers, it is to keep an inventory of the better wines in order to sell older vintages.

Few know that wines such as Brouilly, Morgon and Moulin-à-Vent have a good ageing potential. Actually, after 8-10 years they develop flavours reminiscent of their prestigious northern neighbour.

Beaujolais has had some problems with bad press in recent years and now works hard to improve its reputation. Three excellent vintages in a row and a steady reduction of the amount of Beaujolais Nouveau will probably help. And also, I think, the increase in the number of ambitious and interesting producers.

The windmill at Moulin a Vent in Beaujolais

The windmill at Moulin a Vent in Beaujolais, copyright BKWine Photography

Bottles in the wine cellar

Bottles in the wine cellar, copyright BKWine Photography

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