Cru Beaujolais is often the go-to for sommeliers and wine professionals, and for good reason. Yes, it’s Gamay, but it’s nothing like the bubblegum fruit bombs of Beaujolais Nouveau that you may have tasted in the past.
This is Beaujolais all grown up. Just south of Burgundy with ten Crus to explore, each offers its own personality and refinement. The Crus from north to south are Saint-Amour, Juliénas, Chénas, Moulin-a-Vent, Fleurie, Chiroubles, Morgon, Régnié, Brouilly and Côtes de Brouilly.
All of these regions produce Gamay with structure, and can be cellared for many years. That being said, this more serious version of Gamay is still fruit forward, easy to drink and fun, but offers a more sophisticated and intriguing take on the grape.
Château du Moulin-à-Vent 2017 Champ de Cour (Moulin-à-Vent); $63, 93 points. A small harvest because of hail has produced this richly concentrated wine. Dense tannins and impressive black fruits are layered with acidity and a tensely structured character. The wine should be aged further to reveal its full panoply of flavors. Drink from 2022. Wilson Daniels Ltd. Cellar Selection. —Roger Voss
Domaine Dubost 2018 La Ballofière (Morgon); $28, 93 points. This wine has the structure proper to a Morgon, with rich tannins as well as ripe and juicy red fruits. A dry core is balanced by the delicious fruitiness and intense acidity. All of these elements will allow the wine to age. Drink from 2021. Kindred Vines. Editors’ Choice. —R.V.
Domaine Franck Besson 2017 Clos du Fief (Juliénas); $30, 93 points.
This wine has great richness, tannins and smooth black fruits that have benefited from 12 months in wood. It has an impressively ripe texture and a dense structure. Drink the wine now, although it will be even better from late 2020. Bonhomie Wine Imports. Cellar Selection. —R.V.
Domaine Richard Rottiers 2018 Mortperay (Moulin-à-Vent); $25, 93 points. This well-structured wine has a firm, dry core of tannins. The fruit is coming through, with swathes of blackberry flavors and potential richness. Generosity will be the dominant character of this wine as it matures. Drink from 2021. American B.D. Editors’ Choice. —R.V.
Domaine Chardigny 2018 Clos de la Folie (Saint-Amour); $25, 92 points. Wood aging has given this wine an impressive extra dimension. Along with the ripe black-cherry fruits, the wine has spice and a generous texture of perfumes and richness. It is fuller than a typical Beaujolais cru, but it is attractive and will be ready from late 2020. American B.D. Editors’ Choice. —R.V.
Domaine des Marrans 2017 Corcelette (Morgon); $25, 92 points. This ripe, fully textured wine offers both tannins and forward, ripe fruits. It has a juicy element, with red-berry fruits, good acidity plus structure from wood aging. The elements in this perfumed wine will come together from late 2020. Skurnik Wines, Inc. Editors’ Choice. —R.V.
Maison du Carra 2018 Clos des Déduits (Fleurie); $20, 92 points. This single vineyard with vines up to 50 years old has produced a solid, dark and structured wine. Ripe fruits give the wine weight and juicy acidity, both of which will allow it to age. Drink from 2021. Kysela Père et Fils. —R.V.
Albert Bichot 2018 La Madone (Fleurie); $30, 91 points. The steep hill of La Madone vineyard gives structured wine such as this. It is powerfully ripe, full of black cherry and spice with a core of tannins that will soften comfortably. Fresh acidity adds to the aging potential. Drink from 2021. Albert Bichot USA. —R.V.
Les Frères Perroud 2018 Amethyste (Brouilly); $25, 91 points. The Perroud family is a famous name in Brouilly. Here, Robert Perroud has teamed up with his brother Michel to produce this ripe, structured wine that brings out minerality as well as the spice and toastiness of a wood-aged wine. It should be ready from late 2020. Authentique Vin. —R.V.
Pascal Aufranc 2018 Les Cerisiers (Juliénas); $22, 91 points. Planted in an area where cherry trees once grew, this fruity wine also has firm core of tannins. Its acidity and structure show aging potential, giving a texture that will soften. Drink from late 2020. Zancanella Importing Co. Editors’ Choice. —R.V.