What is Beaujolais Nouveau Day and why does it happen?

You might think you’re still a while away from drinking France’s 2019 vintage, but you’d be wrong.

Wine lovers all over the world mark Beaujolais Nouveau Day when the first of the country’s new vintage is released each November.

But what is it and why do we have it? Well it’s all about the style of wine.

Beaujolais Nouveau (pron. bow-jo-lay noo-vo), as the name would suggest, is designed to be consumed while it’s new.

For that reason Beaujolais Nouveau is released at the same time each year, falling on Thursday 21st November in 2019. That’s just two months to pick the grapes, turn them into wine, bottle it and ship it out around the world!

There are more than 120 villages across Beaujolais that celebrate this wine, and in Lyon fireworks will light up the sky to mark its release.

What is Beaujolais Nouveau?

Made from the Gamay grape, this is a light and fruity wine which is best to drink young. You don’t want to be cellaring a bottle and saving it for a special occasion!

Like its slightly older brother (Beaujolais is released on a later date) Beaujolais Nouveau has light body, high acidity and low tannins. You’ll taste raspberry and cherry flavours but you’re also likely to pick up notes of kirsch, banana, cinnamon spice and maybe even bubblegum.

Winemakers get these flavours by using a process called carbonic maceration. It’s a type of whole grape fermentation which maximises the natural fruit flavours while keeping the tannins to a minimum.

Best served chilled, Beaujolais Nouveau is ideal for drinkers who love a fun and simple wine. Don’t expect any oak complexity from this!

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We’re wine nuts, not wine snobs. We’ve been exploring the world on a mission to find great wine for the last 50 years. If you love adventure as much as we do, you belong with us. We know our winegrowers like family – and in some cases they actually are. Expect to hear from these legends of the soil, see behind the scenes access into vineyards and wineries and get news on fresh finds from our travels on this page. Drink responsibly. Visit drinkaware.co.uk for further health information. You must be aged 18 or over to follow.

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