Published November 18, 2011
The wine world has its own Mardi Gras.
The third Thursday of November is the annual uncorking of the Beaujolais Nouveau--aptly dubbed "Nouveau Day.”
Beaujolais Nouveau is a young red wine made from hand-picked Gamay grapes grown in the Beaujolais region of France. While most red wines improve with age, you have to drink the Beaujolais Nouveau quickly.
But only if you follow the rules.
Under French law, the wine can only be released to the public at 12:01 a.m. on the third Thursday of November (I swear), just weeks after the wine's grapes have been harvested. And since the fermentation process is so short, the fruit wine with light tannins should be consumed right away (or within a year of being made) and is best served slightly cooled.
That’s why many producers, including regional giant Georges Duboeuf, race to deliver the first of the vintage to the world. Thankfully Franck Duboeuf, founder of Les Vins Georges Duboeuf, came by and brought the wine for us!!
Duboeuf is one of the largest wine merchants in France and produces more than 2.5 million cases of wine annually, and he is largely responsible for popularizing the annual Beaujolais Nouveau phenomenon.
Originally, Beaujolais Nouveau was consumed to celebrate the end of harvest and give a first taste of the new vintage. But it's morphed into so much more than that. "We also like to think of Nouveau Day as the start of the holiday season when families and friends come together over a festive meal,” says Duboeuf.
And at a suggested retail price of $10, it is food friendly and affordable.
And good looking. The Beaujolais Nouveau label features a vibrant, one-of- a-kind design created by Brooklyn graffiti artist, Kaves. It’s a cross between a streetscape in Paris and Brooklyn and has a cool 1930s feel.
This year marks the 60th anniversary of the first Nouveau in 1931 so why not give it a try? It’s sort of historic.
And I never thought I’d say this, but drink it fast!
Questions for our Wine Pro
1. What is your death row wine?
It would have to be a case of Beaujolais Crus wines to bring with me to continue the party!
2. What region produces the best wine?
Truly, the best wine is the one that gives you your most memorable experience.
Of course ,Beaujolais is located in the region of Burgundy which I feel produces some of France’s best wines.
You have the white Macon, such as Pouilly-Fuisse.
3. What is the best wine and food pairing you’ve ever had?
I like simplicity, like a Duboeuf Morgon paired with roast chicken.
4. What will the U.S. wine industry look like in 10 years?
The U.S. will be the biggest wine market in the world. And we will see a generation of Millennial wine drinkers grow up. These consumers are smart, adventurous and social. They are sensitive to the economy and like to entertain at home. They like to recommend restaurants and wines to their friends on Twitter and Facebook. You will see more wine marketing through social media and iPad apps.