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Beaujolais Nouveau News (Merged topic)

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Members might be interested in an article by NYT's wine critic Eric Asimov entitled "What's New in Beaujolais is not nouveau" saying that the producers are trying to make the wine to get taken and be consumed more seriously. And in today's IHT there is an AP note that there will be rosé versions issued when the wine debuts November 15th.


John Talbott

blog John Talbott's Paris

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There's quite a mass of work to be done if they expect people to take beaujolais nouveau more seriously.

And what's the point anyway? There are zillions of serious wines around. Why deprive us of the only wine in the world that's actually a joke? They wouldn't stop making money on it. Or maybe they just want to charge more* for it?

(*Translation in Truth Language of "more seriously".)


Edited by Ptipois (log)

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For trying out the wine we all love to hate, here are Heather Stimmler-Hall’s recs from her Secrets of Paris newsletter/site:

La Cloche des Halles: 28, rue Coquillière, 1st.

Juvenile’s: 47, rue de Richelieu, 1st

Willi’s Wine bar: 13, rue des Petits-Champs, 1st

Le Rubis: 10, rue du Marché-Saint-Honoré, 1st

Les Enfants Rouges: 9, rue de Beauce, 3rd

Le Mauzac: 7, rue de l’Abbé-de-l’Epée, 5th

Café de la Nouvelle Mairie: 19, rue Saint-Jacques, 5th.

Cave Drouot: 8, rue Drouot, 9th

Mélac: 42, rue Léon-Frot, 11th

Au Vin des Rues: 21, rue Boulard, 19th.

Le Baratin: 3, rue Jouye-Rouve, 20th


John Talbott

blog John Talbott's Paris

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There's quite a mass of work to be done if they expect people to take beaujolais nouveau more seriously.

(*Translation in Truth Language of "more seriously".)

It is very unfortunate for wine makers in Beaujolais who are making serious wines and whose reputation has been ruined by Beaujolais Nouveau. People now equate the words Beaujolais with Beaujolais Nouveux and forget that there are some delicious wines from some of the crus like Morgon, Juliénas, Fleurie, etc.


www.parisnotebook.wordpress.com

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I truly love Cru Beaujolais and even Beaujolais-Villages. But the annual marketing campaign really has tainted the name of Beaujolais wines for the average consumer that doesn't get the difference between the serious wines and the annual "let's-dump-an-ocean-of-inferior-wines-on-the-Stoopeed-Americans-and-laugh-all-the-way-to-the-bank" wines.

Every year around this time, I imagine Georges DuBouef driving his Aston-Martin (or whatever expensive ride of his choosing) through the streets of Beaujolais, and grinning with glee as he cackles into his cell phone to his marketing manager, "Oui! Oui! We've done eet again! Stoopeed Americains will buy whatever merde we tell them to drink if we make it seem important. Idiots!" :rolleyes:


Katie M. Loeb
Booze Muse, Spiritual Advisor

Author: Shake, Stir, Pour:Fresh Homegrown Cocktails

Cheers!
Bartendrix,Intoxicologist, Beverage Consultant, Philadelphia, PA
Captain Liberty of the Good Varietals, Aphrodite of Alcohol

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Every year around this time, I imagine Georges DuBouef driving his Aston-Martin (or whatever expensive ride of his choosing) through the streets of Beaujolais, and grinning with glee as he cackles into his cell phone to his marketing manager, "Oui! Oui! We've done eet again!  Stoopeed Americains will buy whatever merde we tell them to drink if we make it seem important.  Idiots!"  :rolleyes:

Oh, the French fall into it at least as much as the Americans and were doing so long before Americans heard about it. It would be a mistake to think that the beaujolais nouveau marketing hype is directed primarily at the US clientele.

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It is very unfortunate for wine makers in Beaujolais who are making serious wines and whose reputation has been ruined by Beaujolais Nouveau.  People now equate the words Beaujolais with Beaujolais Nouveux and forget that there are some delicious wines from some of the crus like Morgon, Juliénas, Fleurie, etc.

It's all gamay anyway, one of the grape varietals that are the most difficult to get right. So most of the time you get plonk, and when properly made it can yield great wine. But cases are relatively rare (think gamay de Touraine for a little cousin of beaujolais nouveau, and at the other end of the spectrum think of chanturgue, that mythical Auvergne red that used to be one of the most celebrated wines back in the 17th century and is the basis of coq au vin). Except for a few great chanturgues and bugey-cerdon, I am not a fan of gamay, but I agree that some crus de beaujolais are drinkable.

People who know at least a bit about wine do know that there are good crus in beaujolais (those you named, and régnié, moulin-à-vent...) and I don't believe serious wine makers in beaujolais suffer more than serious wine makers in other regions. Outside of beaujolais nouveau, regular beaujolais are widely consumed.


Edited by Ptipois (log)

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It is very unfortunate for wine makers in Beaujolais who are making serious wines and whose reputation has been ruined by Beaujolais Nouveau.  People now equate the words Beaujolais with Beaujolais Nouveux and forget that there are some delicious wines from some of the crus like Morgon, Juliénas, Fleurie, etc.

It's all gamay anyway, one of the grape varietals that are the most difficult to get right. So most of the time you get plonk, and when properly made it can yield great wine. But cases are relatively rare (think gamay de Touraine for a little cousin of beaujolais nouveau, and at the other end of the spectrum think of chanturgue, that mythical Auvergne red that used to be one of the most celebrated wines back in the 17th century and is the basis of coq au vin). Except for a few great chanturgues and bugey-cerdon, I am not a fan of gamay, but I agree that some crus de beaujolais are drinkable.

People who know at least a bit about wine do know that there are good crus in beaujolais (those you named, and régnié, moulin-à-vent...) and I don't believe serious wine makers in beaujolais suffer more than serious wine makers in other regions. Outside of beaujolais nouveau, regular beaujolais are widely consumed.

A good example of a cru is a fleurie by domaine du vissoux that costs around 12 euros.When one drinks it one realizes as to what a good beaujolais tastes like.

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I hesitate to post this, but.....in the spirit of revealing wha's up here - several footnotes impose themselves about the wine we love to hate:

1) Running/limping this AM I heard (I think on French Inter) that the new BN had a bit of raspberry taste but on consulting Le Figaro later was informed that it had the taste of bananas and "Fraise Tagada" (Tagada Strawberries, if you know what they are.)

2) We tried a bottle of the famous Chateau de Pizay, and for me, there were no fruity flavors, but incredibly, it wasn't half bad.

3) Finally, has anyone read “I’ll drink to that: Beaujolais and the French Peasant who made it the world’s most popular wine” by Rudolph Chelminki (au of “The Perfectionist: Life and Death in Haute Cuisine”), Gotham/Penguin, $27.50?


John Talbott

blog John Talbott's Paris

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The recent France-Amerique has an article on the Beaujolais region that suggests one eat at Le Buffet de la Gare in Belleville or the Auberge Vigneronne in Regnie-Durette.


John Talbott

blog John Talbott's Paris

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I think this is real news - ie there is no news, and are no articles, no BS about the wine we all love to hate - le Beaujolais Nouveau - at least not in the French press.

I've willingly had one tasting and two unwillingly (so compliant am I).

And, the envelope please.

Well, this untutored palate says it's tasteless - now wait, it does taste of grapes, but none of that bananas, raspberries, blackberries, skunk-weed, whatever stuff it usually is associated with.

Now while Pti says

Oh, the French fall into it at least as much as the Americans and were doing so long before Americans heard about it. It would be a mistake to think that the beaujolais nouveau marketing hype is directed primarily at the US clientele.
my scientific research reveals that 1/2 of BN is sold in Japan, 1/2 in the USA and 1/2 in Anzac, that doesn't leave much here for us.

John Talbott

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I think this is real news - ie there is no news, and are no articles, no BS about the wine we all love to hate - le Beaujolais Nouveau - at least not in the French press.

I was thinking the same thing. I didn't see anything this year about Beaujolais Nouveau, no "dossiers" about where to go, no signs announcing the arrival.


www.parisnotebook.wordpress.com

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I think this is real news - ie there is no news, and are no articles, no BS about the wine we all love to hate - le Beaujolais Nouveau - at least not in the French press.

I was thinking the same thing. I didn't see anything this year about Beaujolais Nouveau, no "dossiers" about where to go, no signs announcing the arrival.

Is there a thought that BN is more for untutored palates? The release was HUGE in Japan--it was on not only reported in news programs, but also daily variety shows, and in the newspapers, etc. I think more than one of my co-workers had pre-orders at their usual purveyors.

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I was thinking the same thing. I didn't see anything this year about Beaujolais Nouveau, no "dossiers" about where to go, no signs announcing the arrival.

Funny — I met Jérôme Moreau at Le Grand Tasting last Saturday; he immediately opened a bottle of BN and poured me a glass. From anyone else I think I'd have shrunk away... But when this man says "drink", you drink. That beaujolais nouveau was perfectly drinkable. It was really wine. Wonder why they're being so discrete about it. Not enough overripe banana? Not enough Haribo strawberry perhaps? There was a hint of candy, but good candy: Framboises de La Vosgienne, the little rasperry candy one used to find at automatic vendor machines in the métro, or pâtes de fruits à la framboise. Really nice this year. I suppose it also depends on the producer.

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The release was HUGE in Japan--it was on not only reported in news programs, but also daily variety shows, and in the newspapers, etc. 

There was a photo from Japan in one of the AM throwaway newspapers showing several people in a bath filled with BN.
no signs announcing the arrival.
I have seen a few but definately fewer than I'm used to.

John Talbott

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I bought a bottle for the first time ever this year. I'd seen the hype in previous years, but there's something about buying wine in a convenience store that I can't get over. I don't know why, since I do practically everything else in my life in one. But quite frankly, those Georges DeBoeuf labels look downright cheap and tacky to me.

This year, I have a wine shop that I visit regularly. I don't know much about wine, but I'm trying to learn, so my husband and I try to go every week and follow the owner's recommendations. When I went in over the weekend, the owner had six bottles open for tasting, so I tried a couple. The first, at the lowest end of the price scale (around 2500 yen) tasted like straight-up grape juice. Definitely not worth it. The second, which the owner recommended and priced at 2800 yen, was lovely - kind of peppery and astringent, if you'll pardon my descriptors. The last one, the most expensive I tried at 3500 yen, tasted like cherries. I liked it, but it seemed a bit one-note, so I got the peppery one - it was Domaine de Buis-Rond.

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I was in the local grocery store in the Dallas, TX area last night. In previous years, they had a large display of the wine. This year, much smaller. They had the Georges DeBoeuf. I had intended to actually buy a bottle on the release day (I love a good drinking holiday), but it slipped my mind.

Price for a bottle of this years realease? $14 USD.

Forget that. I'm all for celebrating the harvest and putting up with marginal wine or some other beverage. But at that price? No thanks. I took a pass.


Jeff Meeker, aka "jsmeeker"
jmeeker@eGullet.org

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Those prices — from nakji and jsmeeker's posts — are outrageous. Definitely insane for what is honestly, most of the time, average wine at best and utter plonk at worst.

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I have never lived in a country where wine has been "cheap". I'm used to paying around $20 US for what I'd consider a nice wine. I'd fear for my health if I lived anywhere it was cheaper than that! :biggrin: Especially if those two months I spent in Australia are any measure.

Out of morbid curiosity, what does a bottle of Beaujolais Nouveau go for on average in France?

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There was a photo from Japan in one of the AM throwaway newspapers showing several people in a bath filled with BN.

I'm sure what you saw was the "Wine Spa" at Hakone Kowakien Yunessun. There are a few theme spas there, including the "Japanese Sake Spa" and the "Green Tea Spa". It's not far from where I live in Kanagawa, but I've yet to go! Every year, they do a launch there.

Here's a link (in English): http://www.yunessun.com/english/yunessun.html

This year in Japan I'm not seeing as much buzz for BN as I've seen in years past. Might be an economy thing...

[Edit: Add Link]


Edited by I8U8 (log)

Regards,

Peter

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I have never lived in a country where wine has been "cheap". I'm used to paying around $20 US for what I'd consider a nice wine.

Of course, but beaujolais nouveau is not exactly wine.

There's a joke going in France: "A glass of beaujolais nouveau? — No, thanks, I prefer wine."

Sorry I have no examples of prices at the moment. Will look around.

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Out of morbid curiosity, what does a bottle of Beaujolais Nouveau go for on average in France?

At my "fine" wine shop, as opposed to Nicolas or Monoprix, it was just shy of 5 E a bottle.

John Talbott

blog John Talbott's Paris

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I was thinking the same thing. I didn't see anything this year about Beaujolais Nouveau, no "dossiers" about where to go, no signs announcing the arrival.

Funny — I met Jérôme Moreau at Le Grand Tasting last Saturday; he immediately opened a bottle of BN and poured me a glass. From anyone else I think I'd have shrunk away... But when this man says "drink", you drink. That beaujolais nouveau was perfectly drinkable. It was really wine. Wonder why they're being so discrete about it. Not enough overripe banana? Not enough Haribo strawberry perhaps? There was a hint of candy, but good candy: Framboises de La Vosgienne, the little rasperry candy one used to find at automatic vendor machines in the métro, or pâtes de fruits à la framboise. Really nice this year. I suppose it also depends on the producer.

I generally agree that most nouveau is better used as toilet cleaner rather than drunk. However, I find that Fish and its wine shop Le Dernier Gout usually have an interesting bio-dynamic version. Sorry I can't reall the name of the producer but it hasn't been too bad in previous years ('06 and '07).

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At my "fine" wine shop, as opposed to Nicolas or Monoprix, it was just shy of 5 E a bottle.

I need to move to France, I guess. Anyway, I don't regret having tried it, but I'll save my 3,000 yen for mining the shop's Bordeaux selection from now on.

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