Comparative Tasting 2012 Chateau Bonnet Beaujolais, Saint-Amour and Moulin-A-Vent

I love side-by-side tasting. Nothing makes similarities and differences more apparent than by tasting wines together.

I'm a big fan of Beaujolais, especially during the holiday season. People rave about the ease of pairing Pinot Noir to lots of different foods, but Gamay is even easier. Low in tannin, happy with fruit, Beaujolais is easy drinking, easy pairing, and if you get one of the 10 established Crus (villages) you can get complexity and quite a tasty wine for a really good value.

Both of these bottles of Beaujolais fit that bill. I drank them over two days to see how they compared to each other and how well they held up. Day one there was tasty fruit, raspberry, strawberry jam, they both drank like simple Pinot Noir. Either bottle would be a welcome addition to a holiday table, and both have the characteristic tutti-fruity quality that is to be expected in Beaujolais. But side-by-side, there were definite differences that I'm certain I would not have picked up on had I tried these one at a time.

They both had similar, if not identical tasting notes, yet side-by-side, I definitely preferred the Moulin-A-Vent. It had just a bit more weight and complexity than the Saint-Amour. Either would pair beautifully with turkey and gravy, yet they both had enough substance to hold up to an herby pork roast, not to mention an assortment of holiday sides. These are pop and pour bottles, neither was as good the second night. Perfect for a Christmas party, they are easy drinking enough to please non-wine drinkers, and interesting enough to serve people with more discerning palates.

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