Beaujolais Celebrations Around the World

Despite a smaller harvest, it's still a party to ring in the 2012 beaujolais

A smaller harvest of the beaujolais this year didn't hinder the worldwide celebrations for the beloved gamay grape. In honor of the release of this year's Beajolais Nouveau, which French law prohibits the sale of until the third Thursday of November (fun fact), the world got to taste the newest Old World wine. 

In France, winemakers carried on with the celebrations despite the weaker harvest, which was down about 45 percent. Still, beaujolais producers insist that the weather actually made this year's harvest the best yet. Winemaker Daniel Bulliat told Decanter.com that the show must go on. "We must continue. We want to protect the convivial image of beaujolais," he said. That includes a party for 20,000, who turned out to gather to uncork the beaujolais in Beaujeu, France. 

In the U.S., Georges Duboeuf hosted the flagship celebration in New York City. To honor the 30th anniversary of the Georges Duboeuf Beaujolais Nouveau in the U.S., the winemaker hosted what was dubbed "nouveau magic" with performances by magicians and "techno-illusionist" Marco Temptest, according to a release. The celebration also included an "augmented reality" app for people to join the party.

And in Japan, the Huffington Post reports on one overly enthusiastic Beaujolais Nouveau party: taking a wine bath. That's exactly as weird as it sounds. And we celebrated with a beaujolais and a burger — winning. 

Gothamist shared some more facts about beaujolais: made in Burgundy, the grapes must be hand-harvested and grown on individual, free-standing vines. The first release of the beaujolais was in 1951, making this its 60th year. 

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