Halifax, November 14, 2017 – Get ready for it. This Thursday is a big day for wine enthusiasts.
It is Beaujolais Nouveau Day – the day wine made from the first pressed grapes of the harvest season in the Northern Hemisphere goes on sale around the world.
Millions of bottles of this light, fruity wine are shipped globally. By French law, they are not to be sold before 12:01 a.m. on the third Thursday of November every year, making it one of the most anticipated wine releases of the year.
“There’s been a dramatic increase in interest in this wine in the last ten, particularly five years,” said Peter Rockwell, Category Manager of Wine at the NSLC. “It’s a fun wine. It has fun labels and an interesting story and that’s really appealing, particularly for new wine enthusiasts because this is a wine with a long and interesting history.”
We’ll have a few thousand bottles on the shelves at the Nova Scotia Liquor Corporation, but with only a finite amount made, once it’s gone, it’s gone.
Grapes are taken from harvest to bottled wine in just six to eight weeks and it’s meant to be drunk young. It is produced in the Beaujolais region of Eastern France and by law, the grapes must be picked by hand.
The wine is made with a process called carbonic maceration, or whole berry fermentation, that uses carbon dioxide rather than crushing the grapes to release the juice.
The NSLC will feature three Beaujolais Nouveau wines: Georges Duboeuf Beaujolais Nouveau 2017 ($17.99), Nouveau Cuvée Nature Beaujolais-Villages ($19.99) and Mommessin Beaujolais Nouveau ($16.00).
“It’s a very light, fruity wine with low tannins because the grapes don’t spend a lot of time in the skins. It’s the ultimate entry level red wine for anyone who doesn’t like reds. And it responds very well to a light chill. Put it in the fridge for 10 to 15 minutes and that brings out the fruitiness,” Peter said.
He said this wine is ideal with a charcuterie board, pairs well with poached salmon, roast chicken and smoked ham. “There’s no better reason to open a bottle of Beaujolais Nouveau than a dreary November night. It’s fun and relaxing and perfect with comfort-type foods,” Peter said.
While it’s not produced for longevity, the limited supply of the light, fruity wine makes an ideal Christmas gift, can be kept well into the New Year and some say it’s at its best around Easter.
But if you simply can’t wait and you pop the cork November 16th, know you’re part of a global phenomenon as people in homes and bars around the world celebrate exactly the same occasion, and have done so for more than 60 years.
- The region of Beaujolais just north of Lyon is 54 kilometers long and no more than 14 kilometers wide
- There are nearly 4,000 grape growers in this region
- Approximately one-third of the entire crop of this region is sold as Beaujolais Nouveau
- Beaujolais must be made from the Gamay grape, a purple grape that’s also called Gamay Noir á Jus Blanc
- Beaujolais Nouveau is the world’s most popular first wine
- Almost 65 million bottles are sold every year
About the NSLC
For over eighty years, the NSLC has been managing the safe and responsible sale of beverage alcohol in Nova Scotia, returning 100% of its profits to government to help fund key public services. As a true partner in our communities, the NSLC conducts its business with integrity and respect for the environment, while supporting the sale of more than $190 million in locally-produced products every year. For more information about the NSLC, please visit our website at myNSLC.com.
For more information please contact:
Nova Scotia Liquor Corporation
O: (902) 450-5920
M: (902) 456-5040