As a wine region, Beaujolais is separated from Burgundy (French: Bourgogne) because of the differing blend. However, looking at the map from a travelers perspective, and how France is divided into administrative regions, Beaujolais is actually a part of Burgundy – and some even argue that they should be seen as one even from a wine perspective, despite the differences.
The Beaujolais area might actually be most famous for the autumn harvest festival, on the third Thursday each November – which sees celebrations across the planet at the stroke of midnight for the Beaujolais Nouveau festivities. The day is actually celebrated across the world, but of course if you want to be there for the unveiling of the current years fruity and light-bodied wine, the best place would arguably be where it’s made, and the biggest festival is typically in Beaujeu – the regional capital. Meanwhile, you could visit Lyon for their ‘Beaujolympiades’ (Beaujolais Olympic) or almost any Paris restaurant or bistro for parties where hundreds of bottles are uncorked.
The Burgundy wine region has been referred to as the fairytale land of wines, with stories of kings, conquerors and commoners alike coming to the region for the seductive effects of the local wines. There are amounts of reds and whites, where Chardonnay grapes form the base for the whites, and Pinot Noir is typically found in the reds – and despite the popularity of both in wines around the planet, Burgundy is still seen as home for these varietals. Beaujolais is based on Gammay grapes, which go from vine to bottle in just a few weeks – leading up to the festivities coming so soon after the annual harvests.
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