Last Thursday night, the third Thursday of November, Le Pichet marked the arrival of the first French wine of 2011 with our traditional Fete de Beajolais Nouveau. Beaujolais Nouveau is a wine made from gamay grapes harvested in the regions south of Lyon and vinified using a very short fermentation period, usually a few weeks. It is a typically a very light, fruity, vivacious wine not intended to be taken very seriously, but instead to be quaffed with pleasure and exuberance at celebrations that are the moral equivalent of other harvest festivals like Munich’s Octoberfest.
Last Thursday was a cold, blustery night with a threat of rain and snow in the forecast. We had heard that traffic was going to be terrible, as the “Occupy…” protesters had announce a march across the Montlake cut scheduled for rush hour. Happily, there were a line of people waiting under Le Pichet’s awning at 6pm when the doors opened for the party.
For those who have not attended one of our Beaujolais Nouveau or Bastille Day parties, it can be hard to imagine what the atmosphere will be like. After all, Le Pichet is usually a pretty orderly place. Here are a few photos to give you an idea of how it happens.