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Beaujolais Cru


baruch
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thx mogsob. hope others also share their wisdom.

another question (s) which falls under the burgundy category:

beaujolais crus - chenas, morgon, & moulin-à-vent - ALL, @ various times, have been referred to, in different publications, separately or together, as burgundy-like.

no 1 article seems to agree. can any1 shed any lite as to which of the 3 are, in fact, burgundy-like or none @ all or....

2nd question for those knowledgeable about the 10 beaujolais crus:

moulin-à-vent has been referred to/nicknamed the "King" (fact),

fleurie as the "Queen (fact),

then which of the crus is known as the "Prince", if there is such a thing???

Edited by Craig Camp (log)
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From a good producer (an important qualification), some Beaujolais, most particualrly Morgon and Moulin-a-Vent, take on Pinot Noir characterisitics with bottle aging. The French use the verb pinoter to describe this (the verb is also used for Cote-Roties that resemble Burgundies). I don't think I've ever heard the term used with Chenas, but it is possible, as that is one of the better-aging crus, and I would think it might be possible with Regnie and Julienas, as well.

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merci claude.

oddly, this burgundy-like description I HAVE SEEN in a # of references re: either a morgon OR a moulin-à-vent, but never both.

re: chenas - it was referred to a burgundy-like in the reference book "France Culinara" (sic).

juliénas are generally full-bodied, but less so than the above mentioned 3.

as to a régnié, i 'had' thought of as medium-bodied???

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i must not understand - i thought the body, i.e. full, med, lite, referred to the alc %?

the fruit & acid balance determined by the finesse of the individual vigneron, as well as obviously the "terroir".

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Baruch -- I'm not sure how you mean to compare the wines. If you are looking at ageability, Fleurie is so pretty when young, I would never think of aging it -- drink within the first four years of the vintage. Regnié and Juliénas can take some aging. But the producer is going to be more important than the village the wine came from.

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Alcohol determines the viscosity of the wine, but many of the wines with the 'biggest body' fall apart quite quickly.

Now I'm no chemist but I am not sure that alcohol determins viscosity. I think that glycerol does. The Bordeaux 1st growths tend to have higher levels than others (at about 10g/l) while your typical good cru bourgeois will have 5 or 6.

Of course, I could and prbably am wrong!!

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Baruch -- I'm not sure how you mean to compare the wines.  If you are looking at ageability, Fleurie is so pretty when young, I would never think of aging it -- drink within the first four years of the vintage.  Regnié and Juliénas can take some aging.  But the producer is going to be more important than the village the wine came from.

i guess, in terms of comparison, beaujolais is generally divived into 3 :

full-bodied (therefore, able-to-age better): chenas, morgon, moulin-à-vent, juliénas, régnié (?)

med-bod: fleurie, brouilly, côte de brouilly

lite-bod: st-amour, chiroubles

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Alcohol determines the viscosity of the wine, but many of the wines with the 'biggest body' fall apart quite quickly.

Now I'm no chemist but I am not sure that alcohol determins viscosity. I think that glycerol does. The Bordeaux 1st growths tend to have higher levels than others (at about 10g/l) while your typical good cru bourgeois will have 5 or 6.

Of course, I could and prbably am wrong!!

The viscosity of a wine is created by a combination of both by alcohol and glycerol. We were just talking about alcohol levels at the time.

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A few general thoughts on Beaujolais:

Moulin-a-Vent -- most powerful and age worthy

Morgon -- sturdy, deep and expansive

Brouilly -- earthy, fruity and supple

Cote de Brouilly -- elegant and intense

Julienas -- lush, spicy, smooth

Chiroubles -- light and delicate

Fleurie -- floral, fragrant and silky-textured

Saint-Armour -- bright and charming

Regnie -- fresh, full-bodied, meaty

Chenas -- rich and luscious

The problem is that there is so much crap coming out of Beaujolais, that finding good wine is very difficult. The 2000 vintage was particularly good, and the Moulins I had from that year were very good value, but not pinot and below what I would consider a good burgundy.

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The problem is that there is so much crap coming out of Beaujolais, that finding good wine is very difficult. 

Be careful what you say!! A French journalist was successfully sued this year for saying that Beaujolais is a vin de merde ! That being said, I read that the last vintage a full one third of the Beaujolais harvest was distilled into INDUSTRIAL ALCOHOL because of over-production and poor quality!!

Mark

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Be careful what you say!! A French journalist was successfully sued this year for saying that Beaujolais is a vin de merde ! That being said, I read that the last vintage a full one third of the Beaujolais harvest was distilled into INDUSTRIAL ALCOHOL because of over-production and poor quality!!

One of the many reasons I am thankful that French civil courts do not have jurisdiction over my person or my assets. Moreover, even if I were sued in absentia, the plaintiff would not be able to enforce a judgment predicated on the violation of the First Amendment in US courts.

So, I say again, while not all Beaujolais is crap, a frightening high percentage of it is.

Now -- come get me! :biggrin:

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So, I say again, while not all Beaujolais is crap, a frightening high percentage of it is.

mogsob,

If I may, " . . . a frightening high percentage of WHAT YOU HAVE TASTED is."

I am a huge fan of Gamay and Beaujolais, in particular. Over the last year, I have bought more Gamay than any other variety and several of those cases purchased are destined for aging. The older Beau that I have had from great producers has been one of the most beautiful wines I could imagine.

FWIW, what follows is my primer on Beaujolais; I use this and add to it and subtract from it as I taste more and more. In hopes that you will find any of it of interest, I post it here:

Appellations:

Beaujolais – accounting for about half the wine produced here, it comes from the Bas Beaujolais and the flatter land to the west of Belleville

Beaujolais Superieur – is essentially from the Beaujolais appellation but must have a minimum potential alcohol of 10.5% when picked (as opposed to 10% for simple Beaujolais)

Beaujolais-Villages accounts for about 25% of production and is sourced from the hills of the northern part of the Beaujolais region.

Beaujolais Crus - of which there are ten, are found in this northern part and each bears the name of the commune of its origin. From north to south (approximately) the Crus are: St.-Amour, Julienas, Chenas, Moulin-a-Vent, Fleurie, Chiroubles, Morgon, Regnie, Brouilly and Cote de Brouilly

Beaujolais Nouveau – this may carry the appellation of Beaujolais, Beaujolais Superieur or Beaujolais-Villages. It is very young and generally considered to be for immediate consumption.

Producers:

The four small producers most recognizable (mainly due to the wine press) are Marcel LaPierre, Guy Breton, Jean Foillard and Jean-Paul Thevenet. This “gang of four” regularly gets high 80 and low 90 point ratings from Parker and others.

Other producers of note are Dom. Vissoux, Louis Jadot, Jean-Paul Brun, Diochon, Paul Janin, Michael Chignard, Dominique Piron, Chat. Thixin, Dom. Dupeuble, Dom. de la Voute des Crozes, Jean Calot, Pierre et Paul Durdilly, Dom. du Granit, Alain Michaud and Georges Viornery. Two producers pointed out as very good by board participants are Laurent Martray and Jean-Paul Ruet.

I have also had excellent and age-worthy wines from Coudert a/k/a Clos de la Roilette.

Vintages:

1999, 2000 are excellent vintages.

Personal comments:

Virtually all Beaujolais rouge is made from the Gamay grape. A small amount of Beaujolais blanc is made from chardonnay.

I find the Cru Beaujolais to be my favorite wines but I have had excellent Beaujolais-Villages and a few good wines from the other appellations. I find that in excellent vintages, Cru Beaujolais from very good producers can age and develop very easily for 3-5 years and, in exceptional cases, up to ten years.

I also find that each of the Cru is, in the best of producer’s hands, capable of exhibiting its own terroir. This is especially true of those wines capable of aging.

And I have yet to pay more than $20 a bottle for even the very finest wines.

The crus (by Darby Keeney):

Moulin-a-Vent: The most Burg-like (Beaune-like) of the 10 crus, these often show less forward fruit, higher acidity and more tannin than any others. If you want to age a cru, this is tradionally the one to pick. My personal opinion is that, while they are interesting wines, I prefer the perfume and crunchy quality of the more "typical" wines like Fleurie.

Julienas: These wines can show some real structure under loads of forward fruit - so they are among the more age-worthy (3-4 years) of the crus. I've found these to be more fleshy than Moulin, so I personally enjoy them more - especially as I don't really age crus. I think Julienas and Morgon run more in the blackberry crowd than the other crus.

Morgon: Dense wines (for Beaujolais), approaching the stature of Moulin-A-Vent in the best cases, while still giving the impression of being wholly Beaujolais. Can have the stuffing for some age.

Chenas: The smallest of the crus, so these wines are less often seen around here. Most of the best land is now part of Moulin-A-Vent, I think. I feel that the wines have less density than Moulin-A-Vent or Julienas, and lack the aromatic quality that Fleurie and Chiroubles. It often leaves something missing, for my tastes at least. Then again, I haven't had more than a handful of really interesting Chenas, so I may be biased.

Fleurie: Lighter in nature, but perhaps the most aromatically and texturally complete of the crus, often with a floral element beneath the ripe fruit. I think that the "crunchy fruit" quality of Beaujolais really shows in good Fleurie. For these reasons, they are best young - both the fruit and texture change fairly quickly. Very pretty wines.

Chiroubles: Similar to Fleurie, but often a bit less dense. Think elegance and lightness. Is Chiroubles the Volnay of Beaujolais?

Brouilly: I've found them to be missing something, as they don't have the size of the ageworthy crus and aren't as fun to drink young as Fleurie and Chiroubles. Still, they can show some nice prominent red fruit balance with structure.

Regnie: The newest of the crus. It often falls in the lower part of the pack, when you think about depth and structure - maybe a bit less complete that Chirobles, but still with many of the same qualities.

St.-Amour: One of the more lighter, softer, quaffing-friendly crus. Rarely would these be "serious" wines, but for a simple quaffer around the grill, they can be quite nice.

Cote de Brouilly: I've not had any of these, so I'll let someone else pipe in. I've read that they "fit" somewhere around Chenas.

Comments by Becky Wasserman Hone (importer of several fine Beaujolais):

A bit more Beaujolais lore. The older vines have very small grapes, usually with thickish skins, and are still found on a rootstock called Viala which is apparently the best for gamay. Moulin-à-Vent, Côte de Brouilly, and Morgon are considered to be best for cellaring. There is a domaine called 'Souchons' in Morgon which has vines close to eighty years old, magnificent wine. Alain Michaud does an old vine cuvee (Cuvee Prestige) of Brouilly which is superb.

Best, Jim

www.CowanCellars.com

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1 word, FL JIM

AWESOME :biggrin:

question, s'il vous plait:

as i have inquired before - moulin-à-vent is referred to as the "king" of beaujolais; fleurie as the "queen; is 1 of the other cru's referred to as the "prince"? i have read somewhere, but have forgotten.

u state the moulin-à-vent is the most burgundy-like, which does make sense since IT is referred to as the "king" of the beaujolais; but again to clear up, i have also read that chenas & morgons are ALSO considered to be burgundy-like!!??

in your opinion, how many & which one (s's) of the crus are considered burgundy-like?????

Edited by baruch (log)
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in your opinion, how many & which one (s's) of the crus are considered burgundy-like?????

In my opinion, none.

The description of the crus in the "primer" is by another fellow, so that opinion is his.

I think Gamay, while having certain attributes that may be similar to pinot, seldom actually tastes like it. But what I do taste, I absolutely love, especially those with the concentration and backbone to age well over several years. And, of course, many of the better Beaujolais are now made the same way Burgundy is, that is, they do not undergo carbonic maceration.

Best, Jim

www.CowanCellars.com

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In my opinion, none.

The description of the crus in the "primer" is by another fellow, so that opinion is his.

I think Gamay, while having certain attributes that may be similar to pinot, seldom actually tastes like it. But what I do taste, I absolutely love, especially those with the concentration and backbone to age well over several years. And, of course, many of the better Beaujolais are now made the same way Burgundy is, that is, they do not undergo carbonic maceration.

Best, Jim

Couldn't have put it better myself. And you're right about editing my post.

I like Gamay -- and prefer other wines from the south of France for wines the feature that grape.

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purchased a '00 Dom. du Granit Moulin-A-Vent Appellation Moulin-A-Vent Contrôllée, Alfred Gino Bertolla, Vigneron - La Rochelle 69840 Chénas - France

question: was/is this beaujolais produced in moulin-a-vent or in chénas??????????

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purchased a '00 Dom. du Granit Moulin-A-Vent Appellation Moulin-A-Vent Contrôllée, Alfred Gino Bertolla, Vigneron - La Rochelle 69840 Chénas - France

question: was/is this beaujolais produced in moulin-a-vent or in chénas??????????

The vineyard is in Moulin-a-Vent, the winery is in Chenas. Is is common for Beaujolais producers to own vineyards in more than one Cru. They are still estate bottled.

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I recently tasted Marcel Lapierre's Morgon at an organic wine tasting. Superb. It's worth noting that his wine is produced under "bio-dynamique" conditions. I guess that would translate -- roughly-- to organic, but not quite.

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I recently tasted Marcel Lapierre's Morgon at an organic wine tasting. Superb. It's worth noting that his wine is produced under "bio-dynamique" conditions. I guess that would translate -- roughly-- to organic, but not quite.

Biodynamic does not translate to organic. Click here for information on Biodynamics

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