Name of varietal: Gamay
Common synonyms: Gamay Noir à Jus Blanc, Bourgignon Noir, Game, Petit Bourgignon, Petit Gamai, Petite Lyonnaise
Parentage of the grape: unknown
History of the grape: Legend has it that it was brought over by the Romans in the first century BC to the town of Beaujeu, near Beaune, in the Burgundy region of France. In the mid 1300s it was cultivated as a relief from the strains of the Black Death. It’s much easier to grow than Pinot Noir, which is the distinguished red grape of Burgundy, and can ripen up to two weeks earlier. However, in 1395, the Duke of Burgundy, Philippe le Hardi (Philip the Bold), signed an edict outlawing the grapes. He said they were “inflame and deloyal” (despicable and disloyal) and taking too much space from the noble grape Pinot Noir. In 1459, Philippe le Bon (Philip the Good), grandson of Le Hardi, signed another edict reaffirming his family’s distaste for the varietal, afraid their Read more »

Mentor for Gamay Wines

Mary Margaret McCamic

Based in North Carolina, I'm a wine instructor at The Chef's Academy and owner of The Clever Vine, a wine consulting and education service. I hold the WSET Diploma and have a strong background in French wine, with a special interest in the Loire Valley.

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Gamay on Snooth

  • I've been watching some YouTube videos of Sommeliers participating in a blind tasting. There's some terms they are using that I am curious about.They use the terms "Medium" or "Medium-Plus" when describing things like viscosity or aromatic intensity. "High" and "Low" are also thrown around quite a bit.Is there an organized list or description sy... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Wine description terms

  • I was taught by a chef a couple of generations my elder 'cook with the ... ... ... Burgundian pinot noir or gamay. I've probably cooked it with two or three dozen different reds, and the only ones I didn't like were an over-oaked zin years ago (tasted like an oak-chip reduction) and an Amonitllado sherry (tasted too salty). Lesser-oaked zins a... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Whatcha drinking tonight?

  • Like many foodies, I adore oysters on the half shell. One of my first jobs ... ... mixing Pinot Noir with Gamay (Try Domaine Taupot Merme Borgogne Passe-tout-grains 2011.) Master Somm Laura Maniec (of NYC’s Corkbuzz wine bars) confessed to me that she is a traditionalist. She recommends:  For grilled oysters with a little lemon and pepperGrüne... Read More

    From the article Nonconformist Oyster & Wine Pairings

  • Louis Jadot Beaujolais Villages Combe Aux Jacques 2012


    wonderfully crisp and tart, yet pleasant throughout the palate. very drinkable and soon one is farther into the bottle than intended. Read More

    Wine review by Pickit4flavor

  • JB, I'd like to hear some of your recommendations (if any) for Beaujolais ... gone back to try any others. Gamay seems to be an acquired taste. It appears to me based on your post, that Melissa08 need to find some Beaujolais with some age on it. (FYI, the best Beaujolais I've had so far has been a Domaine Dupeuble blanc - fantastic chardonnay Read More

    Forum post in the topic In need of Cru Beaujolais advice

  • Excuse me, Mr Jonderry, but I have been cellaring & drinking Duboeuf's ... comments, the Crus are all Gamay grape, they are like baby Burgundies that do require cellaring to reach their peak, they do have a range of fuller to lighter bodies, but would never satisfy the acidity you're looking for (cranberry), especially not when young. I would ... Read More

    Forum post in the topic In need of Cru Beaujolais advice

  • What varietals do you think would match my fruit-driven palette well, such as ... an adjective) is going to be Gamay or Chardonnay. So all of them will be the same. The differences between them depend on the producer and to some degree the characteristics of the particular cru. As a rule, the wines from places like Cote de Brouilly and especia... Read More

    Forum post in the topic In need of Cru Beaujolais advice

  • I've been trying wines from different Beaujolais regions and have yet to find one that I love. Here are the ones I've tried with disappointing results:Clos de la Roilette Fleurie '13Fessy Regnie Chateau des Reyssiers '11Duboeuf Beaujolais-Villages '11Beaujolais NouveauWith all these wines, the problem is that the wines don't have the vibrant red... Read More

    Forum post in the topic In need of Cru Beaujolais advice

  • In America tomorrow is the big day: Thanksgiving. Of course most of us will ... what you can expect from the Gamay grape. Snooth Editorial Says: Try it with this recipe for Mushroom and Fontina Tart. The red tables wines from Portugal’s Douro Valley are elegant stand-ins for the expected reds. Cedro Do Noval Douro DOC 2009, from the esteemed P... Read More

    From the article Unpredictable Food & Wine Pairings

  • The father of all wine grapes won't go the way of the dinosaurs – for ... ... including Chardonnay and Gamay. According to sources, Vouillamoz and the volunteers pooled together money to purchase the vineyard. A 1999 study by University of California, Davis, revealed the importance of the grape. “It came as little surprise when DNA fingerprinti... Read More

    From the article Scientist and Volunteers Save Papa Bear of World's Wines

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