The Louis Jadot Beaujolais-Villages 2014 is produced from the Gamay grape sourced from long-term contract growers in the Beaujolais-Villages AOC and from Louis Jadot Beaujolais Cru vineyards near the village of Régnié. Gamay is a cousin of the Pinot Noir grape and has been grown in the region since the 1300s. In France, wine is categorized by where it was grown and not necessarily by the grapes used to make the wine, so French wine labels often show the region and not the grape (though, if the bottle says Beaujolais, it will be Gamay). If the label simply shows Beaujolais, that indicates the grapes were grown all over the region, if the label says Beaujolais-Villages, then the grapes came from vineyards surrounding 39 specific towns in the northern half and Beaujolais Cru will also have one of the 10 Cru designated villages on the label. Beaujolais Nouveau is a very young wine (released on the 3rd Thursday of November no matter when the harvest ended, sometimes the wine was fermented for only a few days) created to celebrate the harvest. It is a wine that is meant to be enjoyed as soon as possible, it is too often available in the US after its high point. This Beaujolais–Villages was fermented in stainless steel tanks and the alcohol content is 12.5%.
The color is clear, bright, see-thru garnet red. The nose is will remind you of Pinot Noir, with a little more ripe black cherry and a little less herbs, along with a strawberry fruit roll-ups aroma. This is a very juicy, but dry wine, with loads of ripe fruit flavors paired with a solid display of structure. Wines this fruit driven tend to be one-dimensional “fruit bombs”, but the Louis Jadot has balance. It tastes of strawberry and black cherry, herbs, with a slight “grip” from the tannins. The mid-palate adds blackberry and slight hint of black pepper. This is a light to medium bodied wine, but it seems larger because there is a lot happening on your palate. The finish mirrors the body of the wine and the herbs and the minerality keep it hanging on for a long time.
The Louis Jadot Beaujolais Villages 2014 is loads of fun to drink, not as formal as a Pinot Noir and showing juicy fruit flavors and funky herbs and minerals. It should sell for a buck or two over $10 and it is widely available, even supermarkets. I think it would pair well with spicy foods, tacos with hot salsa, Thai food or Chinese and it is an excellent, kind of upscale, party/get together wine. A bit of a left-field wine, not the same old, same old, that is fun and easy to drink.