A Guide to the 10 Crus of Beaujolais

A Guide to the 10 Crus of Beaujolais

This Guide to the 10 Crus of Beaujolais is just a quick introduction and round-up. Throughout this post, we've linked to our more detailed blog posts on each Cru. But for now we hope this helps you on your exploration through the wonderful world of the 10 Crus of Beaujolais.
Jeff Patten
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The Story of the Chick'n Shack sandwich and the Three Cru Beaujolais

Beaujolais is perhaps the most versatile wine to accompany almost all foods. Probably not good with a caramel stout brownie sundae float, but I have not tried it. However, in Lyon, a town that celebrates food, Beaujolais is served with virtually everything. A salad with warm chicken livers in a mustard vinaigrette? Check. A spinach salad with lardons and warm vinaigrette made with the bacon fat. Cool bottle of Beaujolais--yes! Salmon? Very nice with Fleurie. A roast chicken and Regnie? Yes please. Steak and fries: Morgon. Blood sausage and Chiroubles? Why not.
flatironwines Admin
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Cru Beaujolais: Focus on St. Amour and Chenas

Cru Beaujolais: Focus on St. Amour and Chenas

Today we'll finish up with the two remaining crus, St. Amour and Chenas.

It is tempting to assume that, because I am covering them last, I hold St. Amour and Chenas in least regard among the 10 Crus. This is far from the case.

It is true that, when you browse our selection of Cru Beaujolais (we have over 60 right now!), you do not encounter very many examples of either Cru. In fact, I see that we presently have exactly one bottling of each.

But both those bottlings are dear to my heart. I drink them frequently. I cellar them. I love them.

Jeff Patten
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Cru Beaujolais: Focus on Chiroubles and Regnie

Cru Beaujolais: Focus on Chiroubles and Regnie

Regnie and Chiroubles have a couple of things in common. They both border Morgon, but, unlike their famous neighbor, they are considered among the lightest and most forward-drinking of the 10 Crus.
Jeff Patten
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Cru Beaujolais: Focus on Cote de Brouilly and Brouilly

Cru Beaujolais: Focus on Cote de Brouilly and Brouilly

We deal with two AOCs in one focus this time because, as the names suggest, these are two Crus that really ought to be discussed together. The most important distinction between the two Crus is in the names themselves: Brouilly is on the flatland; Cote de Brouilly is on the adjacent "Cote," or slope. If you know anything about wine, you can guess which produces the more interesting wine. While Brouilly produces fun, light, fruity juice for drinking young, often out of a jug at a simple bistro in Paris, while Cote de Brouilly makes serious wine. Both Brouilly and the Cote de Brouilly have similar soils — a mix of granite, clay, and limestone — so really we have a natural experiment that proves conclusively that the superior drainage and exposure offered by a cote results in better wine.
Jeff Patten
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Cru Beaujolais: Focus on Julienas

Cru Beaujolais: Focus on Julienas

If Julienas sounds a bit like Julius Caesar, it’s because they were actually making wine here 2000 years ago and Julius did in fact give the AOC its name (as well the name of its principal village, also Julienas, and another village in the AOC, Jullie).  When I learn stuff like that it gives me great hope that quality wine production will continue in the great vineyards of France despite climate change.  After all, the climate has varied wildly in the last two thousand years (it was far warmer in the Middle Ages than it is now, for example), and yet they have stuck with it all this time… though I haven’t seen any tasting notes from 13th century Cru Beaujolais.
Jeff Patten
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Cru Beaujolais: Focus on Fleurie

Cru Beaujolais: Focus on Fleurie

Moulin-a-Vent and Morgon seem to have a lock on the title of most famous of the ten Crus of Beaujolais.  But it is just as easy to pick number 3, and it is Fleurie.  In fact, there are arguments to be made – and they are frequently made in Paris, where it is much easier to pick up the top wines of Fleurie from the likes of Yvonne Metras – that Fleurie actually rivals those other two Crus and may even exceed their quality.  

Fleurie may lack the blockbusters that Moulin-a-Vent can produce, and it may not have the same league of famous producers that you find in Morgon, but some believe that Fleurie’s terroir is the finest, and that it is capable of producing the most elegant wines of Beaujolais.  It may not be the “king” of Beaujolais – that would be Moulin-a-Vent – but you can certainly call it the “queen.”

Jeff Patten
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Cru Beaujolais: Focus on Morgon

Cru Beaujolais: Focus on Morgon

Morgon is one of the larger Crus.  It is located pretty much in the center of the action, surrounded by Fleurie, Chiroubles, Brouilly, and Regnie.  It is perhaps the most famous of the 10 Crus, with the only possible exception being Moulin-a-Vent.  Why?
Jeff Patten
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Dispatch: Bastille Day Chez Lapierre

Dispatch: Bastille Day Chez Lapierre

Apologies for the lack of dispatches. I am back in Amsterdam for at least a week and I am excited to restart the telling of my tale.

I have been on an amazing adventure for the past three weeks since I posted and between some epic car issues, a ton of travel, and inconsistent wifi, I have not really had the energy, time or focus to post.

flatironwines Admin
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Cru Beaujolais: Focus on Moulin-a-Vent

Cru Beaujolais: Focus on Moulin-a-Vent

As promised in my introduction to the 10 Crus of Beaujolais, here is the first Cru-specific chapter, devoted to Moulin-a-Vent. Moulin-a-Vent is plum in the middle of the northern half of the 10 crus, sandwiched between Fleurie and Julienas. Moulin-a-Vent is a hill. The name means windmill, and the cru is named after a 15th-century windmill that sits at its top, at 258 meters.
Jeff Patten
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Wine Wanderings:  Beaujolais

Wine Wanderings: Beaujolais

Beaujolais is a great place to travel when you're with the team from Kermit Lynch.  No U.S. importer has done more to promote the wines of Beaujolais than Kermit Lynch.  Among his other great finds is the entire line up of the Gang of Four producers of Morgon: Thevenet, Breton, Lapierre and Foillard.
Jeff Patten
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