WHAT: Fall is the perfect time for a refreshing, fruity, uncomplicated wine like Georges Duboeuf Brouilly 2011. You can have it at a picnic, a tailgate party, on the back porch or with dinner. It’s versatile and wallet-friendly.
The wine is a beautiful, deep ruby color in the glass, with powerful floral and fruit aromas. The first sip fills your mouth with concentrated fruit flavors, especially strawberry and plum. This is not a wine you have to spend a lot of time figuring out. The pleasure is right up front, and the freshness lasts through the final sip. The tannins are almost nonexistent.
I have been drinking Deboeuf Brouilly and Beaujolais for years and have never had a bad bottle. I’ll look at the Beaujolais in November as the winemakers prepare to release their Beaujolais Nouveau, the first wine of the current harvest.
Brouilly is the southernmost of 10 Beaujolais Crus, or growths. It is the largest cru and produces some of the best wines. Beaujolais is in the southern part of the Burgundy region in Southeastern France.
I would serve this wine slightly chilled and young. The younger it is, the better it will taste. The wine is made from 100 percent Gamay grapes, and like most French wines is relatively low in alcohol (12.7 percent).
WINERY: Georges Duboeuf is known as the King of Beaujolais because he has done so much to popularize the wines of the region.
Georges formed “Les Vins Georges Duboeuf” in 1964 and now represents more than 400 growers in the region. He and his son Franck oversee the business, which produces more than 2.5 million cases of wine a year.
The wine labels are recognizable for their use of colorful flower images.
Duboeuf is considered a négociant, the French term for a wine merchant who buys grapes and wine from smaller growers and sells the blends under its own name. Négociants are especially important in Burgundy because the vineyards have been broken into ever smaller pieces by successive inheritances. A family might only own a few rows in a vineyard.
GOES WITH: I served this with fried chicken wings we made one night, and it was quite a feast. I had macaroni and cheese, Teri had some steamed beans, and we had a salad. The bright, fruity flavor cut through the tangy flavor of the wings and complemented them perfectly.
You could also serve this with nearly any chicken dish, roast duck, roasted red meats, light cheeses or as an aperitif.