With an annual production of 30 million bottles of wines distributed in over 120 countries, when Georges Duboeuf (a.k.a. the King of Beaujolais) says that the “2009 Beaujolais is the vintage of a lifetime,” wine lovers everywhere are taking notice.
I was one of the lucky dozen invited to a private tasting dinner at the renown, La Folie , where Roland Passot and his team created an exquisite menu (the Trio of Rabbit: Loin, Rack and Braised Leg with Baby Vegetables, Roasted Garlic, Natural Jus was a real show-stopper) to pair with these fine wines. Our host, the elegant Mr. Georges himself (along with his grandson, who is finishing up his studies in the states before returning to the family business) could barely contain his excitement over the 2009 vintage.
When asked what makes 2009 so special, Mr. Duboeuf replied, “We had the most perfect weather across all 3,000 vineyards of Beaujolais, with 50,000 grape pickers hard at work. (By French law, the grapes must be hand-picked.) The grapes were purplish-black, exceptionally rich in sugar and full of dark berry flavors such as blueberry and cassis, resulting in some powerful yet elegant wines. The Beaujolais –Villages are aromatic and fruit-forward while the Beaujolais Crus are full-bodied and opulent.”
He paused, took an appreciative sip of the Brouilly and continued, “2009 is the vintage of the sun-possibly the best of my life-time. This vintage will be talked about for years to come.”
As a young boy, Georges started working at his family farm( fourth generation) where they had a few acres of vines and produced Pouilly-Fuisse. He’d get on his bike and make deliveries to the neighborhood restaurants. It didn’t hurt that two of the local chefs were Paul Bocuse and Pierre Troisgros, who later became his mentors and convinced him to start making Beaujolais. And the rest is history.
“The Vintage of a Lifetime” road tour for the press and trade will be arriving in NYC on June 2, 2010 to coincide with the presentation of the Georges Duboeuf Wine Book of the Year Award.
These fine wines will be available for purchase this Fall.