Beaujolais is home to the Gamay grape, where it makes light- to medium-bodied red wines that tend towards delicate fruit and fresh aromatics. The area may be most strongly associated with bubble gummy Nouveau, but it's really the wines from the ten cru villages that are pacing the quality that this region is increasingly known for. Beaujolais, technically a part of Burgundy, picks up at the southern end of the Mâconnais and flows into the outskirts of Lyon, the gastronomic capital of France. The wines of Beaujolais are omnipresent on the tables of any traditional Lyonnaise bouchon, where they pair so nicely as a contrast to the city's hearty cuisine.
To the east between Beaujolais and the Swiss border lies the Jura, a hotspot for off-the-beaten-path wines. The white wines are notable for (often) featuring an intriguing level of oxidation, while the reds remain fresh, delicate, and aromatically captivating.
Photos taken in May, 2016 and February, 2017. Visits to Château de Lavernette in the village of Leynes and Domaine du Pavillon de Chavannes in Côte de Brouilly. Photographic stroll through the crus of Morgon, Chiroubles, Fleurie, Moulin-à-Vent, Saint-Amour, Juliénas and Chénas. A cellar visit and tasting with jean-Luc Mouillard in the Jura, with visits to Chateau-Chalon and a look at the astounding soil of l'Etoile. Photos in Lyon show the Rhone River, a traditional bouchon and Vieux Lyon.
Click photo to enlarge, then hover over image for caption. All images copyright Jeff Bramwell.