One Grape Variety: the Gamay Noir à Jus Blanc
The characteristic and exception of Beaujolais wines is that only one grape variety is used to make them all: Gamay Noir à Jus Blanc. Growing in the Beaujolais region since the beginning of 17th century, this variety has accompanied our region in the evolution of the vineyard and collective vinegrowing tradition. And it is, of course, on Beaujolais' limestone-clay and granitic soils that this plant has found its true home. Nearly 70% of the 36 000 hectares of land planted with Gamay Noir à Jus Blanc throughout the world is in Beaujolais.
In days gone by it was nicknamed petit Gamay, Gamay rond or Bourguignon noir.This hardy and productive variety requires constant tending to curb its vigour and control its yield. To give of their best the vines need to be planted close together, with from 6000 to 13000 vines per hectare. In the Beaujolais-Villages and Cru appellation areas they are spur pruned (using the goblet, fan, charmet or cordon style), while in appellation Beaujolais the vinegrowers are also allowed to use cane pruning methods. There are never more than 3 to 5 spurs on each vine for a maximum of 10 buds (eyes).