Beaujolais has had a streak of excellent quality over the last few vintages, continuing its reputation as one of the great sources of value for its best wines, at least for those that are fans of the style. 2017 may put a momentary blip in that streak, as several hailstorms caused substantial damage to stretches of prime vineyards, some of which were victimized for the second year in a row. The timing of the storms reduced volume by as much as 80% for some producers, which is causing many wines to jump sharply in price just to stay in business. Fortunately the fruit that survived was still of high quality, so even with price increases the wines are still worthwhile and exciting. Those lucky enough to have dodged the hail are truly blessed to have yet another strong vintage under their belts, and like Chateau Cambon don't have to see their prices budge. This house has roots back to the late Marcel Lapierre, one of the most important names in modern Beaujolais and organic/Biodynamic winemaking, and continue their tenets of minimal intervention, low sulfur usage, and general 'hands off' winemaking.
Beaujolais is never a wine that expects to be judged based on the tremendous weight or size, so for this to be described as light and pretty is exactly where they set out for it to be. Classic spot-on Gamay aromas of cherry skins and purple flowers pop from the glass, not as juicy or sweetly fruited as the warmer 2015 vintage. On the palate the unfiltered texture gives the fine tannins a little something extra to grip onto behind the savory cherry fruit, and the bright acidity brings out the dark iodine tones, almost reminiscent of tasting blood in your mouth (but in a food flavor way, not 'I just got punched in the lip' way). That is the aspect of good Beaujolais that makes them such a great match with thinly cut cured meats, one of the great lunch time/snacking wines around.
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We offering free tastings on these wines in the store every Thursday and Friday, and a 10% discount off the retail price through the duration of the day. Come on by and give them a try!