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Japanese to be Among Last to Taste Beaujolais Nouveau

June 4, 1990

TOKYO (AP) _ Japanese wine lovers will be among the last in the world to taste the 1990 Beaujolais Nouveau in November due to the enthronement ceremony for Japan’s Emperor Akihito.

No chartered cargo flights into Japan will be allowed for security reasons during a period of 10 days around the Nov. 11-12 ceremony, an official of the French Embassy said, speaking anonymously.

Japanese drinkers normally enjoy the privilege of being the first to taste the Beaujolais Nouveau - eight hours earlier than in France.

Consumption of the new wine is usually put on sale after midnight on the third Thursday of November because of a marketing strategy by the Union Interprofessionelle des Vins du Beaujolais in France.

This year’s wine will be available in Japan on Nov. 22, a week behind the rest of the world, the official said.

An official of Suntory Ltd., a major Japanese distiller and importer of the wine, predicted that sales in Japan will not be affected by the one week’s delay because the company has found that ″Beaujolais Nouveau’s popularity increases year after year″ in Japan.

Suntory imported some 58,880 cases of the 1989 Beaujolais Nouveau.

″Japanese won’t make much fuss about being the first″ in tasting the wine, Hisao Matsushita, manager of Foods and Beverages for the Narita View Hotel, near Tokyo’s Narita airport. Last year the hotel sponsored wine-tasting parties to mark the beginning of the wine season.

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