Gamay 35, Château de Grandmont Beaujolais Villages Nouveau 2017 France

So, it’s Beaujolais Nouveau day. For quite a while, those of us who love Gamay and Beaujolais were a bit embarrassed by this seemingly outdated celebration. We cringed when we saw a region market itself through its worst wines. But as the reputation of Beaujolais has been rebuilt, now people are taking this day – [...]

Gamay 33, Metrat Fleurie La Roilette Cuvée Vieilles Vignes 2015

Metrat is underrated as a Beaujolais producer. I visited him last year, and really loved the wines. This is one of his best, a Fleurie that comes from a special Lieu Dit, La Roilette. The crus of Beaujolais have a fair bit of soil variation, and there are some especially privileged sites, and now growers [...]

Lovely wines at Noble Rot

Was in Noble Rot on Friday night with Mark and Dan. It ended up becoming quite a big evening and we had some nice wines. How did we manage in London before Noble Rot came along?

Three Champagnes. Jacques Lassaigne Nature Blanc de Blancs 2007 was fine, mineral and detailed with a citrus core. I really [...]

Gamay focus 27: Lapierre Morgon 2009

I was given this wine to taste blind. It’s always interesting to try things without any clue what they are. I really liked it immediately, but it also tasted a tiny bit natural, with some (but not excessive) volatile acidity and a slight savoury spiciness. But these elements integrate beautifully into the whole of the [...]

Wines of the year (4) some brilliant French wines

Continuing the theme of wines of the year, I’ve picked some of the very best French wines that I tasted in 2016, excluding Champagnes and older wines, which I wrote about separately. So many good bottles here, including a strong showing from Beaujolais, which may surprise some people.

Richard Leroy Les Rouliers Chenin 2012 Vin de [...]

Gamay focus 26, Jean-Paul Thévenet Morgon 2015

Continuing on my quest to explore Gamay, I’m sticking with Beaujolais, and another of the newly released 2015s. This is a very highly regarded vintage in the region, but it was a big vintage, in terms of wine style. These are hairy-chested expressions of Bojo, and I’m not sure if it’s my favourite ever vintage, [...]

Gamay focus 25, Julien Sunier Fleurie 2015

This Fleurie is from the ripe 2015 vintage, but Julien Sunier has fashioned a really detailed, relatively fresh wine here, and it’s delicious.

Julien Sunier Fleurie 2015 Beaujolais, France
13.5% alcohol. Lieu Dits La Tonne and Charbonnieres, 2.85 ha. Dense yet fresh and beautifully floral, meaty and spicy. There’s a sweetness here, from the vintage, but as [...]

Gamay focus 22: Château de Durette Morgon ‘Hommage’ 2014 Beaujolais

The Belgian Beaujolais? This wine is from Château Durette, based in Régnié-Durette. In 2006 this was bought by Belgian Jean Joly. He got together some friends from Liège who purchased parcels of vines, with a view to making the wines at Durette, and the project is now quite sizeable, drawing on 30 hectares of vines. [...]

Jean-Paul Brun Beaujolais Blanc Vinification Bourguignonne Chardonnay 2014

This is a special cuvée from the hero of the limestone-based soils of the southern Beaujolais, Jean-Paul Brun. His wines are excellent, and also very fairly priced (this was retail €15 in Paris). His Beaujolais Blanc wines are really good: they’re not showy, but refined and mineral. I really like this wine, although the internets [...]

In Beaujolais: Château du Moulin-à-Vent, Dominique Piron and Thillardon

The famous windmill of Moulin-à-Vent sits at the heart of this 620 hectare Cru in Beaujolais, in the village of Romanèche Thorins. And just below it is the impressive Château du Moulin-à-Vent, which has been renovated extensively since it was acquired by Jean-Jacques Parinet in 2009. Parinet originally came from Beaujolais but then made his [...]