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Our New Beaujolais Guide: What is Natural Wine? And where did it come from?

20 years ago, “natural wine” was the freaky stuff drunk after-hours in Williamsburg and the East Village. Today, collectors around the world chase bottles of natural wine as passionately as DRC – and pay top dollar for some of them.

Where did natural wine come from, and how did it spread so far and so fast? 

In a word: Beaujolais

Natural wine, or “Vins Natures,” as they say in France, was born in the Beaujolais Cru of Morgon. It spread, in large part, because of hardworking, risk-taking Beaujolais winemakers who proved that you can make truly transporting wines naturally, with minimal interventions.

So, for our third post in this Flatiron Guide to Beaujolais, we wanted to visit the story of how Beaujolais became natural wine’s birthplace; who made it a household staple; and where it may be going from here.

It’s pretty hard to read about natural wine without having a glass of the stuff within arm’s reach. So, don’t worry, I’ve listed some of our favorite natural Beaujolais--the staples and the newcomers--below. Taste the vibrancy of this “alive” fruit, so you know just what we’re talking about. 

Happy drinking! And happy reading

Julien Sunier, Regnie, 2019

Yann Bertrand, Fleurie Folie, 2019

Yann Bertrand, 999 m, 2019 (1.5L)

Yann Bertrand, Julienas ...100%, 2019

Yann Bertrand, Morgon Dynamite, 2019

Marcel Lapierre, Morgon, 2019