B-21 Top Recommendation
Grand Cru Beaujolais is re-emerging as the great wine it once was, before it was commercialized and commoditized (Nouveau riche) – which started in the 1970s. As a result, land prices began to plummet and farming vineyards there became a sure to lose proposition. This cycle began to reverse a decade ago as depressed land prices yielded to gentrification; folks with historical wine perspective who knew this to be a great opportunity.
I have had the privilege of tasting a number of old bottles of Beaujolais. Most recently, a wine was served blind at a dinner in Tampa. The folks gathered at the table were very wine experienced. One was a Domaine owner/winemaker from Nuits St. Georges who had recently purchased Grand Cru vineyards in Moulin-a-Vent – Beaujolais. Another was the top importer of Burgundy into the U.S. 200 years of wine experience at the table. The group's consensus was the blind wine was clearly Grand Cru Burgundy, either Le Musigny or maybe Bonnes Mares from the 1950s. Unveiled, the wine was a 1947 Julienas; Grand Cru Beaujolais. Only one at the table knew it was Gamay – Beaujolais, not Pinot Noir. The wine was stunning, no matter. The Gamay grape was pushed south, out of Burgundy proper in 1395 by a Duke's decree, remaining was the tiny hamlet of Gamay located above Puligny-Montrachet. As it turns out, the granitic rock and soils of Beaujolais is where Gamay is most profoundly expressed. Treated seriously with Burgundian winemaking methods, Gamay can be superb, and for now a great value.