First shipment of Beaujolais Nouveau arrives

NARITA, Chiba Pref. (Kyodo) The year’s first shipment of Beaujolais Nouveau arrived from France at Narita airport Saturday ahead of its annual release on the third Thursday of November.

The young wine from France’s Beaujolais region will be available at liquor stores and other outlets nationwide from Nov. 18. One of the importers, Suntory Holdings Ltd., said the region had seen cold and rainy weather through July but the climate had recovered since late August, enabling the wineries to harvest ideal grapes for the wine.

The expected volume imported — about 6 million 750-ml bottles — is around average for a typical year but is likely to be 10 percent higher than the previous year, when imports were hit by an ailing economy.

“We heard that the wine has developed a fruity and balanced flavor. We hope many people will enjoy it,” a Suntory official said.