2017 Nouveau Label

What could be better to celebrate the harvest season than with an invitation to one of Galena’s most celebrated weekends of the year? That would be the Galena Nouveau Wine Weekend slated for Friday, Nov. 17 and Saturday, Nov. 18, 2017.

Centering around Galena Cellar’s Vineyard & Winery, the 33nd Annual Nouveau is always held the third Thursday of November and showcases the annual release of Le Beaujolais nouveau which refers to the practice of bottling the first wine of the harvest just a few weeks after fermentation.


Scott Lawlor &
Christine Lawlor-White

“This year’s nouveau is a gamay noir, blended with the Illinois chambourcin rosé,” said Galena Cellars’ winemaker, Chris Lawlor-White. “Blended with the chambourcin tallie, which is the second press of the chambourcin, not only gives the wine a nice fruit complexity, but with an Illinois twist!”

The Nouveau invitation holds much in store for those attending the French infused, century plus tradition. Kicked off in Galena in 1985 by Galena Cellars, Nouveau Wine Weekend has grown to become a full-blown community celebration that revolves around all things that are wine – particularly Galena Cellar’s 2017 Nouveau wine.

“Nouveau wine is the kind of affordable wine that aspires towards drinkability without needing to be powerful or complex,” Chris explained. “It’s supposed to be something celebratory and about people getting together around the harvest. That’s exactly what our Nouveau Wine Weekend is all about.”

The weekend activities get underway at noon on Friday, Nov. 17 when the new wine is officially released with a toast at Galena Cellar’s opening luncheon held at the Main Street location that day. Many area restaurants follow suit and celebrate with traditional French fare and wine-inspired luncheons.

The afternoon kicks off at 2:30 p.m. with a parade of revelers assembling for a trek down Galena’s Main Street in assorted modes of transportation and merriment from horse-drawn wagons to trollies as the Nouveau wine is handed out to Galena merchants who sport the Nouveau posters in their shop windows.


Eric Faramus

This year’s poster was designed by Eric Faramus of Grayland, Washington, and is a special tribute to Galena Cellars’ founders Bob and Joyce Lawlor whose lives are being celebrated through the artwork. Bob and Joyce both passed away this summer, while their legacy lives on through their family’s continued ownership. Faramus, who was born in France and moved to the U.S. in 1983, lived in Galena for 30 years before moving to Washington. No stranger to Galena Cellars, he has designed numerous Nouveau posters for the winery, starting with the first Nouveau poster in 1985.

Local restaurants and Galena businesses continue the celebration all weekend with live music, wine tastings, dinner specials and receptions.

Galena Cellars vineyard will also be open all weekend for wine tastings and vineyard tours at noon and 2 p.m. Friday hours at the vineyard are Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. – 6 p.m. and Sunday 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Galena Cellars Main Street Tasting Room and Gift Shop is open Monday through Saturday, 9 a.m. – 8 p.m. and Sunday 9 a.m. – 6 p.m. through December.