Brouilly is the largest of the Beaujolais Cru appellations with 3,000 acres of vineyards. Unlike most of the other Beaujolais Crus, Brouilly is not a specific village. It surrounds the Côte de Brouilly appellation on three sides and in some years nearly 800,000 cases of wine are produced. The region is named for Mount Brouilly, an extinct volcano, and the name comes from “brûlé,” meaning burnt. As in virtually all of Beaujolais, the grape grown here is Gamay.
The Gamay grape produces a light, versatile and food-friendly wine. It is best known for making Beaujolais Nouveau, but it is also grown in Loire and Tours. Thankfully the 14th C. Duke of Burgundy’s degree to ban the grape did not spread through all of France.