Motley Cru

Jon and KateRemember when People felt kinda dirty? People magazine – a guilty pleasure, an impetuous point-of-purchase throwdown that you succumbed to to get the inside scoop?

It seems quaint; the magazine rack is now Encyclopedia Britneyspearsica, dripping with self-promotion. What exactly has Jennifer Aniston done in five years, besides milk us for sympathy? Who really cares to keep up with the Kardashians? Whatever happened to the quiet celebrity of character?

Don’t believe the hype. Summer is for beach gossip, but also time to soak in nuance away from the bombast. Ditto for wines: a laid back red that can hold a chill and seal the deal for a languid open-air brunch or dinner is Cru Beaujolais, from Gamay grapes in the north of the region.

With no flag-waving or paparazzi, these wines arrive from ten different crus, or villages, after which each is named. (Don’t confuse with Beaujolais-Villages, a lesser cousin.) The best wines from Beaujolais, the Cru are a value everyone has forgotten; many rank with much pricier Burgundies.

So don’t memorize the names of Jon and Kate’s 8 – they’re already hogging brain cells. The crus you’ll want to remember are Brouilly, Fleurie, Juliénas, Morgon and Moulin-à-Vent, all a bit different, all worth getting to know. They won’t say ‘Cru Beaujolais’ on the label, but you’ll know – just keep it out of the press.

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