By Christopher Matthews
I’m not here to bury Beaujolais Nouveau — many have tried to do that already, and to little avail — but I’m not here to praise it, either.
Designed for immediate gulping to celebrate the Beaujolais harvest (internationally), the cheap and cheerful Nouveau does have its place, despite all the marketing hype, and especially as an excuse for a party (hangover guaranteed!). Depending on the producer and vintage, it can be a decent quaffer or aperitif, best slightly chilled. But given the timing —Thanksgiving is exactly one week after Beaujolais Nouveau’s annual official release — and coupled with its wide availability, the Nouveau is considered by some a Thanksgiving thing, similar to, say, a Butterball turkey (yikes). And hey, at $8.99 a bottle, why not?
This is where I take a stand. Beaujolais (and its Gamay grape) is a savvy choice to accompany the Great American Feast, but please, skip the dumbed-down Nouveau version.