Wines from Beaujolais
The Beaujolais region is in the southern part of Burgundy or the central-right part of France near the Swiss city of Geneva. While administratively considered part of the Burgundy wine region, the climate is closer to Rhône and the wine is sufficiently individual in character to be considered separate from Burgundy and Rhône.
Beaujolais is synonymous with the Gamay grape, as that is almost all of what they make there. Gamay is a red grape with thin skins and so produces red wine with low tannins. Gamay from the region also tends to be very light-bodied for a red wine and relatively high in acidity.
The region is also renowned internationally for it’s use of carbonic maceration. This is a winemaking technique where whole grapes are fermented in a carbon dioxide rich environment prior to crushing. Normally, wines are crushed to free the pulp and juice which is then fermented with yeast to convert the sugars into alcohol. Wines that are made by carbonic maceration are fruity and are very low in tannins as they haven’t had as much skin contact. Wines are also ready to drink quickly but lack the structure for long-term aging.