I had the opportunity to meet and taste with Edouard Parinet of Chateau du Moulin-à-Vent when he visited Houston a few weeks ago. We tasted some fantastic Beaujolais Cru wines that are perfect Spring reds. At the time, none were available in our market for retail purchase which is a big disappointment as I really enjoyed them all. The wines are on the wine list at Brennan's Steakhouse and Hugo's restaurant, check them out there.
The red wines of Beaujolais are made from Gamay, a grape that gives a raspberry or cherry character and has lighter tannins with fresh acidity. Beaujolais is often thought of as a luncheon or picnic wine but the wines of Chateau du Moulin-à-Vent can do that and more. Moulin-à-Vent is one of the Beaujolais Crus and the wines produced in this area are known to be some of the most full bodied in the region that can also improve with bottle ageing.
Across the board, the wines of Chateau du Moulin-à-Vent were more concentrated than most of the Beaujolais Cru wines that I have tasted previously. His wines had the addition of a spicy component and an earthy quality that made for a far more interesting drink than a typical Beaujolais with a broader pairing ability for more serious meals.
I asked Edouard what was the factor that created the power behind his wine and his reply was that, in addition to the granitic soils on his vineyards on which Gamay performs best, it was the winds of the area that had a drying effect on the grapes that truly concentrated the flavors and created the full bodied and more powerful wines that are produced at Chateau du Moulin-à-Vent. Juicy, deep and persistent; I personally would like to see more of this type of red wine through spring and on into our hot summer. All highly recommended!
*Houston Wine Merchant has the ability to order any of the wines of Chateau du Moulin-à-Vent, as well.