By my math, winemakers like to declare a “vintage of a lifetime” once every five or six years, but with Duboeuf’s 2009 Beaujolais-Villages bottling, this might actually be legit.
For the Beaujolais newbie, Beaujolais-Villages is not the same thing as Beaujolais Nouveau. The latter is an incredibly young wine meant to be consumed within the year the grapes were grown. Beaujolais-Villages is a broad term encompassing dozens of villages in the Beaujolais district, and B-V can include grape juice from just about anywhere in the Beaujolais region. Single-village wines are common, too, but Beaujolais-Villages is the broadest representation.
With its 2009 Beaujolais-Villages, Georges Duboeuf has created a wine that’s both unusual and interesting. The key distinguishing feature is that the jammy fruit common with Gamay-based wines is dialed down. Rather, on its core of fresh currants and raspberry, the wine is laced with fresh herbs, including rosemary and sage. The result is a wine that feels fresh and is easy to drink on its own but which carries enough body to stand up to food. Be careful, it’s a real gulper of a wine.
“Vintage of a lifetime?” That might be asking a bit much, but it’s certainly a winner. If you’ve never been a fan of Beaujolais, this is a great wine to try to see just what it can do.
(2007 is pictured; label is otherwise identical.)
A- / $16 / duboeuf.com