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Grapes and Wine - Gamay and Beaujolais
Copyright 2001 by Robin Garr. All rights reserved. Originally printed June 13, 2001. For more information go to

Gamay (pronounced "gam-may") is a widely planted grape, but its name is less familiar than you might expect. That's because, in the French region where more than half the world's supply of Gamay is grown, the geographical name, not the grape, goes on the label. It's Beaujolais ("Bow-zhow-lay"), of course, one of the freshest and fruitiest of wines. American wine fanciers may know that, for many years, Napa Gamay (actually Valdiguie) and Gamay Beaujolais (probably an offshoot of Pinot Noir) were used for similar fruity California wines; those names are now being phased out by regulation.

Although the large Beaujolais producer Georges Duboeuf makes by far the most widely distributed and easily available Beaujolais, I enjoy exploring the smaller, less-well-known producers, like this one made from "old vines."


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