duPeuble Beaujolais Nouveau – Practicing Organic
While we generally eschew the hype surrounding Beaujolais Nouveau – which is typically plonk made from the youngest vines picked at the earliest possible time, mixed with sugar (chaptalization) before fermentation, and then shipped airfreight in order to make it to the USA for some arbitrary manufactured “day” cooked up by Georges duBoeuf in 1985 – we do bring in some when the wine is worthwhile.
We love the Beaujolais from duPeuble, and the wine is made from 50 to 100-year-old vines, organically farmed, with no added sugar, and shipped in reefer containers by sea.
In the hamlet of Le Breuil, deep in the southern Beaujolais and perched above a narrow creek, Domaine Dupeuble has been running almost continuously since 1512. The name of the domaine has changed just three times in its history, most recently when the last heir, Anna Asmaquer, married Jules Dupeuble in 1919.
Anna’s son Paul, and her grandchildren Ghislaine and Stéphane Dupeuble, manage the domain. Tradition runs deep in the family, but each generation has also managed to add something new, including increasing the property. Today it is comprised of over two hundred and fifty acres, about forty percent of which is planted to grapes. Strong advocates of the lutte raisonnée approach to vineyard work, they tend their vines without the use of any chemicals or synthetic fertilizers.
The vineyards, planted primarily to Gamay, face Southeast, South, and Southwest, and about two-thirds of the property is on granite-based soil. The grapes are harvested manually and vinified completely without SO2. The wines are not chaptalized, filtered, or degassed and only natural yeasts are used for the fermentation. The wines of Dupeuble represent some of the best values in the Beaujolais today and are widely regarded for their very high quality and eminently reasonable price.
Today, the 500-year-old domain is led by Ghislaine Dupeuble, who was recognized three years ago as one of the youngest-ever recipients of the Chevalier de l’Ordre du Mérite Agricole, France’s knighthood for farmers and others associated with agriculture. Ghislaine’s Nouveau is fresh and juicy, evocative of the harvest that took place just a few months ago. But – unfiltered, unfined, and unchaptalized – it is also a delicious, worthy wine unto itself. Its unparalleled festive nature and low alcohol make for an irresistible bottle to start an evening.
Beaujolais comes from Burgundy and is made from Gamay Noir (itself a cross of Pinot Noir and Gouais), Beaujolais wines are medium-bodied, somewhat fruity, and very easy to drink. Many Beaujolais taste best when served slightly chilled, making them the perfect Bistro wine (and are served in many Parisian restaurants).
Chill it down in the fridge for 40 minutes to an hour to reveal the Bojo magic!