A Preview of the 2010 Beaujolais Nouveau

For the article after the release of the Beaujolais Nouveau click here

In accordance with French law, the 2010 Beaujolais Nouveau will be released at one minute past midnight on the third Thursday of November — that’s this Thursday, the 18th.

Georges Duboeuf, who always unveils his Beaujolais Nouveau with festive events around the world, will be celebrating this year’s vintage with a “Nouveau Cirque” theme.  As explained by co-proprietor Franck Duboeuf, the contemporary circus spirit captures the excitement of the wine and the limitless possibilities for its enjoyment.  Says Franck, “Beaujolais Nouveau is a youthful wine with a fresh vibe.  It is an explosion of flavor on the palate with bright red fruits and rich, floral aromas.  It is sure to be a crowd pleaser!”

Click to read about the 2009 vintage and ’60s themed uncorking ceremony

Beaujolais Nouveau comes from the Burgundy region of France.  It is made with 100% Gamay, a thin skinned grape that makes a red wine with lower tannin levels.

Though we’ll have to wait until this Thursday for our first taste, Georges Duboeuf has shared his thoughts on the 2010 harvest as well as the aromas and flavors anticipated in this year’s wine.

Writes Georges Duboeuf about this year’s harvest:

“After the fine, hot, sunny days in late August and early September, we had some good rain on Tuesday 7th September, beginning in the early afternoon and continuing to fall for a good part of the night.  The volume of rainfall varied considerably from one area to another from north to south, with the south getting a lot more rain than the north.

“This rain was really good for the vines as they needed water — drought was ravaging certain plots and the grass-covered vines were starting to suffer.  The following morning, the winegrowers looked at their vines with broad grins on their faces — some of them could see that their vines were sparkling with freshness and that the grape bunches had more of a sheen and had got their spark back.

“Actually the vines had been thirsty and the rain brought a little extra roundness to the berries, which had now plumped up.  This will give some of the winegrowers that little extra they needed to get close to — or even achieve — a full yield.”

He also describes the initial impressions of the 2010 vintage:

“Last year, in our very first News from Beaujolais, I told you that ‘2009 might be the best of the 9s,’ well this year, I am tempted to tell you that ‘2010 might be the best of the 0s.’

“Indeed the 2000 vintage was very good quality and the unusual thing about it was that it was good right from the start and then developed well over time.  The thing I remember is that it was a harmonious, soft, elegant, silky, refined and above all very pleasant vintage.

“. . . What I can tell you right now is that the first few juices which are in the process of fermentation — and also the very first wines coming out of the press — have pleasantly surprised us with gorgeous fine crimson colours and their aromas are full of flowers, predominantly redcurrants and wild strawberries.

“In the mouth, the first seven wines we have tasted offered a fine structure, a crunchy, gourmet appearance with gentle tannins and a very flavoursome mouth.”

Beaujolais Nouveau pairs with a variety of foods from burgers to holiday turkey.  The 2010 George Duboeuf Beaujolais Nouveau costs $10 to $11 a bottle.

Beaujolais News from Les Vins Georges Duboeuf, imported by W.J. Deutsch and Sons.  For more information on the 2010 Beaujolais Nouveau click here.