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From the food editor: Eight things to know about the recently released Beaujolais Nouveau

Every year, around the third week in November, we celebrate a very special holiday.

No, not that one. I'm talking about Beaujolais Nouveau Day.

This year, the wine debuted on Nov. 17, right in the thick of Thanksgiving prep and planning, so it didn't get much attention from us.

So let's rap about it now.

Beaujolais Nouveau is a red wine harvested from old vines and smaller vintners at the end of the season. It is typically light and fruity, an easy-to-drink option that lasts through the holiday season. The best part: Its price point usually comes in at less than $20, making it ideal to have on hand at parties.

Here are some other things to know about Beaujolais Nouveau:

• It is made from 100 percent gamay grapes and is typically a purple color.

• The wine is fermented a couple of weeks after the last grape harvest of the year, making Beaujolais Nouveau a young wine. It goes through a fast fermentation process that doesn't include barrels.

• Because of its young age, this wine is best enjoyed immediately.

• Beaujolais Nouveau is somewhat controversial. Some consider the wine a marketing ploy that lacks in flavor. Others find it a delightfully fruity choice for this time of year.

• Bottles usually retail for around $15.

• The name comes from the Beaujolais region of France, which is south of Burgundy and produces the gamay grapes that are harvested in September. "Nouveau" refers to a type of wine that can be sold the same year it was harvested.

• Some varieties of this wine are harvested from vines that are decades old.

• The best food pairings for a wine like Beaujolais Nouveau include cheese (of course), especially a nutty variety like Gruyere; roasted meat like turkey and pork; and any dish with a spicy zing.

Information from Times wires was used in this report.

This week's recipe

I chose a salad that won't make you feel as gluttonous as last week but still has some hearty elements.

This is a multistep dish in which many of the parts can be assembled ahead of time and brought together on a weeknight for a quick meal. The quinoa can be cooked a couple of days in advance and refrigerated, as can the squash. The kale should be done the day of for maximum flavor.

Contact Michelle Stark at mstark@tampabay.com or (727) 893-8829. Follow @mstark17.

From the food editor: Eight things to know about the recently released Beaujolais Nouveau 11/28/16 [Last modified: Monday, November 28, 2016 1:32pm]
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