Carbonic Maceration = Beaujolais Nouveau
I have written about Beaujolais Nouveau in the past, but every year is a new vintage. This year, the European wine growers have had a challenging year. Faced with severe frost in February, and hailstorms in April and August, the amount of available grapes was half the normal crop.
Beaujolais Nouveau is meant to be a celebratory wine, to welcome the latest harvest. If you haven't tried a Nouveau style wine, you might be in for a surprise. It has a different taste to it, due to the fermentation process that the grapes go through. Instead of the normal crushed grapes, sitting in open vats, with the active yeast and sugars working together, these Gamay grapes go through a process known as Carbonic Maceration.
The resulting wine typically produces strawberry, cherry and raspberry notes, but leaning more towards the candied variety. Notes of banana are often present. This is a light, fruity wine, with no, or little tannins. When serving, remember to chill the wine, as it is meant to be around 55 degrees. Also, don't hold on to the wine. This is not a wine to store, and probably won't make it to New Years.
As I have mentioned in two previous blogs, this is the perfect wine for Thanksgiving, as it can pair with a number of different types of food. And, what is Thanksgiving?...a mix of all types of foods (and people with different wine preferences). Since it is so light, this red can work with both light and dark meats, as well as salads, pasta, and cheese. On top of that, your wine budget won't go through the roof, as Beaujolais Nouveau is pretty inexpensive.
Have fun! Beaujolais Nouveau is meant to be celebrated, and the first sip of the 2012 vintage.