Nouveau: Beaujolais and Football Meet in Denton

Published on: Sun, Nov 11, 2018

“Le Beaujolais Nouveau est arrivé!” Translation: The new Beaujolais has arrived. Actually, it is arriving in Denton right on time this Thursday, November 15 at the Campus Theatre’s 21st-annual fundraiser, “Beaujolais and More” wine, beer and food festival.

It’s right on time because the third Thursday in November is Beaujolais Nouveau Day, the official release date for the new wine produced in eastern France’s Beaujolais region.

The French take the date so seriously that they start filling their glasses at 12:01 a.m. local time, the exact moment at which French law allows its release.

Beaujolais is young wine gone from vine to bottle in a matter of weeks.  It is simple and immature, especially to wine connoisseurs, created that way intentionally in 1951 for the masses celebrating the end of harvest season.

In the ensuing 67 years, Beaujolais Nouveau Day has evolved into an international phenomenon. Nearly 325 million bottles of Beaujolais Nouveau shipped to destinations all over the world in 2017 where Beaujolais Nouveau Day is now ‘a thing,’ the U.S. coming in as the third largest national recipient.

Beaujolais Nouveau is the star attraction at Beaujolais and More, but as the event’s name implies, the event really does hold more in store like door prizes and a silent auction.  Really fine wine and beer flow to please palates after the obligatory Beaujolais Nouveau tasting. And aren’t the best wine and beers called “the best” in part because of their pairing potential with exquisite food? Just about every cuisine Denton has to offer is part of Beaujolais and More, local restaurants offering taste-of-Denton samples from savory delicacies to sweet treats.

Warning: Be not misled by the term “tastings.” Beaujolais and More is real food plus real drink, and that equals real full. It’s not an event for the faint of food.

The nouveau in Beaujolais Nouveau has a double meaning for Denton this year: Nouveau wine and nouveau fervor for UNT Mean Green football.

University of North Texas Mean Green Football v University Texas El Paso on November 11th, 2017 at Apogee Stadium in Denton, Texas. (Rick Yeatts Photos: Manny Flores)

Another something big is happening in Denton this Thursday night. The UNT Mean Green will take on Florida Atlantic at Apogee Stadium, and the game will be televised on CBS Sports Network. As TV would have it, it’s a late game kicking off at 8:30 p.m.

So you’re thinking, “Late game and on TV. Think I’ll watch from the recliner this time.”

Au contraire, mon ami! (On the contrary, my friend.) It is a late game, and it is nationally televised. Therefore, we must show up, Denton.

Fans of both teams and thousands more will tune into the game, and the size of the crowd matters. Whether or not the stands are full, game turnout will make a statement about us. This is an opportunity to show the television audience that we are a proud college town, an enthusiastic city rooting for our home teams. Beaujolais and More organizers are such believers in this fact that they’re dubbing the 2018 event “The Biggest UNT Tailgate Party in Denton.”

That’s because the network stars aligned perfectly for Beaujolais and More patrons to tailgate at the festival and make the game in time for kickoff. And no one has to move a vehicle farther than Beaujolais and More at the Denton Civic Center to enjoy both.

The Mean Green Game Day shuttle has a stop on the way to and from Apogee Stadium on Oak Street at Oakland, the south-west side of the public parking lot across the street from the Civic Center. Beaujolais and More-goers can head to the game on the free shuttles that begin running at 5:30 p.m. and run continuously until one hour after the game ends. Getting back to the Civic Center is just as easy with shuttles dropping off and picking up fans at the same stops during their continual round trips between the downtown A-train station and the Apogee Stadium pedestrian bridge.

Shuttles offer hop on/hop off service, and stops are well-signed and easy to spot. Route maps are available at the Discover Denton Welcome Center and at meangreengameday.com.

A final note about this Thursday: Green out. In a college town like Denton, Game Day attire is absolutely appropriate wherever you go and whatever you do all day. That applies to Beaujolais and More, too, this week’s “Biggest UNT Tailgate Party in Denton.”


Admission to Beaujolais and More is $30 per person in advance or $35 at the door. Call 940-382-1915 for tickets. See meangreengameday.com for game day details and shuttle routes.

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