A lightweight red varietal from the Burgundy region of France, Gamay is often compared to Pinot Noir both because they’re grown in similar areas and because they’re relatively-delicate red wines that pair equally well with a juicy lamb chop or a grilled fish. According to sommelier Tim Wallace of Stowe Mountain Lodge in Stowe, Vermont, you can find affordable bottles of Gamay from its home country of France or from newer plantings in the United States.
“Gamay is the grape that I want to drink every day. The style of the wine can vary wildly, there are bright, light, fun, gluggable (or ‘glou glou’ in French slang) options all the way up to serious, single vineyard Cru options with everything delicious in between. Traditionally hailing from Burgundy, Gamay is starting to see a surge of plantings in America with exciting results. When it comes to a fun, easy-drinking yet affordable everyday wine, you just can’t go wrong with Gamay,” Wallace explained.
Wallace considers Gamay grown in the Willamette Valley a particularly solid buy, and he’s partial to the Bow & Arrow Gamay ($18.99). “I absolutely love everything that winemaker Scott Frank makes, but I just keep reaching for another bottle of this beautiful wine time after time. Everything Mr. Frank does is sourced from small, sustainably grown vineyards in the blue collar Willamette Valley. The liveliness in this bottle that comes from bright, mineral acidity and notes of bright berries lends itself to anything from slices of watermelon on the beach to my dad’s famous barbecue grilled chicken. When it’s 100 degrees outside, go ahead and drink it chilled and it’s as refreshing as your favorite rose,” Wallace told INSIDER.