Emulating the festive occasion established by vignerons in the Beaujolais region of France, Adelaida Cellars will present its annual Beaujolais Nouveau Celebration on November 21 to salute the first release of the 2008 Central Coast vintage.
Chef Claude Chazalon of Safran Caterer will prepare traditional French peasant fare to accompany Adelaida’s 2008 Gamay Noir. The cost is $25 per person. Reservations are required via 800-676-1232, ext. 19.
Last year’s Beaujolais Nouveau Celebration was completely sold out when more than 100 guests dined on Chef Chazalon’s traditional coq au vin and the 2007 Gamay Noir. This year, he will be serving duck and pork cassoulet, accompanied by a salad and dessert.
As in France, Adelaida’s Beaujolais Nouveau is made from the Gamay Noir grape (precisely, Gamay Noir a Jus Blanc). Unlike most red wines, Beaujolais Nouveau is intended for immediate consumption and, thus, is fermented and then bottled without barrel or bottle aging prior to release.
“Our Gamay Noir was made according to the traditional Beaujolais model of maceration carbonique, where whole grape clusters are fermented without crushing,” said winemaker Terry Culton. “Yeast penetrates the skins so that each grape functions like a micro-fermenter. The result is a fruit-forward wine with vivid aromas.”
Grapes for Adelaida’s 2008 Gamay Noir were harvested September 2 from the winery’s HMR Estate Vineyard on the west side of Paso Robles. One acre of Gamay Noir was planted in 1964 on what was then called Hoffman Mountain Ranch. The historic vineyard also boasts the oldest Pinot Noir vines along California’s South Central Coast.
The Old World Beaujolais Nouveau celebration is officially launched at midnight on Beaujolais Nouveau Day, the third Thursday of November.