July 12, 2022 by
Maytte Rivera

In the 80’s and 90’s, the words Beaujolais Nouveau could be seen frequently on labels all around world.  This easy drinking, fruity wine with aromas of bananas took the world by storm, putting the name of the French wine region of Beaujolais on the map.  Little did people know they were drinking the red grape Gamay, a family member of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. This light body, high acid grape has been planted in the region of Beaujolais since the 14th century, with some plantings expanding to the cooler regions of the Loire Valley and even New Zealand.

Many examples of Gamay are produced by the process of “carbonic maceration”, where the grapes are placed in vats sealed with carbon dioxide, creating fruity light red wines meant to be drunk young.  However, some producers, especially in the designated Cru Beaujolais vineyards, are treating Gamay like their neighbors in Burgundy treat Pinot Noir, with open vat fermentation, longer maceration and oak aging time, creating deeper, more concentrated flavors of violets, red berries, and wet earth. 

Gamay is a versatile grape when it comes to food pairings, being able to accompany a variety of foods.  Try a bottle George Duboeuf Beaujolais slightly chilled with grilled salmon or roast turkey, or enjoy its fruity character on its own.

Discover our selection of Gamay

Author: Maytte Rivera

Odoo • Text and Image

Read Next