2011 Château Thivin Côte de Brouilly Cru Beaujolais

SKU #1113988

Long regarded as the top domaine in the Côte de Brouilly, Château Thivin is also the oldest estate on Mont Brouilly, built on an ancient volcano back in the 15th century. Run by the third generation of the Geoffray family, who have been farming the estate since 1977, the current proprietor's--Claude, his wife Evelyne and their son Claude-Edouard--practice lutte raisonnée, planting herbs and flowers between the rows of 50-plus-year-old vines, plowing regularly and using natural composts to keep their vines healthy. The Côte de Brouilly comes from Gamay vines planted on south, east and southeast facing, steep slopes, hand-harvested and aged for six months in foudres. Charming now, this wine will become more elegant with a few years in bottle.

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Price: $22.99

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Varietal:

Gamay

- Ah, poor, oft-maligned Gamay. Once widely planted in Burgundy, today the grape is largely confined to Beaujolais. The varietal, officially called Gamay Noir à Jus Blanc is vigorous, early-ripening and can grow in cooler climates. The grapes naturally high acidity, low tannins and low potential alcohol lends itself to exuberant, fruity wines, ranging from the early-release Beaujolais Nouveau, to the more serious Cru Beaujolais from villages like Brouilly, Moulin-à-Vent and St-Amour that are steadily gaining in popularity (and can age remarkably well). Outside of Beaujolais, Gamay is also grown in small amounts around the Loire where it is called Anjou Gamay and Gamay de Touraine. It is also grown in Burgundy's Côte Chalonnaise where it is blended with Pinot Noir, as it is in Switzerland.
Country:

France

- When it comes to wine, France stands alone. No other country can beat it in terms of quality and diversity. And while many of its Region, Bordeaux, Burgundy and Champagne most obviously, produce wine as rare, as sought-after and nearly as expensive as gold, there are just as many obscurities and values to be had from little known appellations throughout the country. To learn everything there is to know about French wine would take a lifetime. To understand and appreciate French wine, one only has to begin tasting them. Click for a list of bestselling items from all of France.
Sub-Region:

Beaujolais

- Region in east central France, often considered a part of Burgundy, but really quite distinct. The principal grape grown here is Gamay Noir. Familiar to many as the source of the Beaujolais Nouveau, the first wine of the vintage, Beaujolais is often fresh, fruity and very appealing red wine. Besides the straight Beaujolais, there is also Beaujolais Villages, and what is known as Cru Beaujolais. The 10 individual Crus, such as Moulin à Vent, Brouilly, Fleurie, Julienas, St. Amour and Chénas, each have their own character, and much more depth than someone who has only tried a simple Beaujolais could ever guess. These often represent value-priced, lovely, food-friendly wines.