Les Granits Bleus is the perfect Beaujolais Villages. Bright, red-fruited, crunchy, ripe with slightly tart acid. Refreshing, mineral, silky at its core. Drinkable like water, but better because it is so tasty. Les Granits Bleus will not improve drastically with time in the bottle. But I would recommend drinking it now or over the next 12 months. I pictured quail or spatchcock at the pairings I’d like while drinking Les Granits Bleus. But it is so smashable, it doesn’t need a food pairing.
Les Granits Bleus
Not a simple Beaujolais Village. This is an organically farmed vineyard with an average age of 50 years. Grown on the granite that is a key quality soil for Beaujolais. It is fermented as whole-bunches with indigenous yeast. Tank ferments and aging allows the retention of all that beautiful fruit.
Domaine de Bel-Air dates back almost 180 years. In 1986 Jean-Marc Lafont and his wife Annick, took over the estate. By 1989 the vineyard work started down the organic path. Their 23 hectares span the great Crus as well as Beaujolais-Villages and Beaujolais Blanc. The wines are thrilling, and they are a pleasure to drink.
Most famous for aromatic, light of body, high acid reds made from the Gamay variety. There is a Burgundian sensibility on Rhone soil types which makes for an interesting style. The quality wines are refreshingly tart with aromatic complexity and enough fruit weight to balance out the tartness. You do have the option of cellaring your quality Beaujolais but often it is not required. The best wines are from the 10 Crus of the region with the lesser appellations being akin to an ocean in more ways than one. Whites from Chardonnay are available but hard to find.
Quality-wise, it sits between Beaujolais AOC and the Cru level wines. It covers 39 villages in the northern part of the region. Approximately one-quarter of production. The terrain of this region is hillier with more schist and granite soil composition than Beaujolais AOC. The wine has the potential to be of higher quality too. Several of the communes in the Beaujolais-Villages AOC also qualify to produce their wines under the Mâconnais and Saint-Véran AOCs.
Grown in the French regions of Beaujolais and Loire Valley. It is early budding, high cropping, aromatic and high acid. It was outlawed from Burgundy by Duke Philippe the Bold for being disloyal. But has no doubt made up for that with honourable service. The best wines from Gamay can be Burgundian in flavour and well worth seeking out. Often they are exceptionally good value too.