Fleurie is one of the ten Crus of the Beaujolais subregion of Bourgogne. Where the word “Burgundy” is synonymous with Pinot Noir, for Beaujolais, it’s Gamay all the way.
This gets a bit complicated now, since the Bourgogne region is really screwy; it’s both an administrative region (think province or state), whose capital is Dijon, and a wine region. But the wine region has a few different districts, like Chablis and the Côtes d’Or, in the latter which grows the pinot we all know and love. The southernmost distruct in Bourgogne is Beaujolais.
There are twelve appellations of Beaujolais, which grow the gamay noir and chardonnay varietals overwhelmingly. The two biggies are Beaujolais and Beaujolais Villages, which take up about 80% of the district. These are AOCs. The rest of the 20% of the district are the ten Cru villages, which make no reference to the Beaujolais region on their labels whatever. You just have to learn what they are in order to appreciate them.
We explored three or four of these Cru areas today; Fleurie is one of them.
Crus are further divided into terroirs or climats. These are the individual vineyards, each of them a little different in their growing conditions. Wine in this tonneau is made from gamay noir grown in the Les Moriers terroir of the Fleurie Cru.
I learned a lot about my favourite region today, stuff that only makes sense when you are actually here, seeing how the land plays out, and talk to the wine makers.