Beaumont’s beloved, black market wine is made with outlawed American vines.
On a slow Sunday night at Virginia’s La Table Provencale restaurant, sommelier Christian Borel unveils a prized bottle of Cuvée des Vignes d’Antan. In a hushed, conspiratorial tone, he calls it a “borderline mythical, quasi black-market wine.” It’s made from outlawed jacquez and herbemont grapes, he explains, and is produced by a coop of rebellious vignerons in the Ardéche region of southern France.
Filled with dark garnet-red liquid, the bottle is sealed with shrink wrap. Its label is stamped with vintage information and a line-drawing of a sultry wine goddess. All in all, it looks indistinguishable from something you’d buy at the supermarket. (...)