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Bordeaux Wines, the Prestige of a Terroir

The vineyards of Bordeaux are a must-see destination for any wine lover, and anyone who has ever ventured into the Gironde will be struck by the sequence of chateaux and vineyards, which follow the flow of small local roads.

Carte des Vignobles Bordelais

Bordeaux wine and its prestigious first growths

When we talk about Bordeaux wines, we immediately think of the mythical First Growths: Château Lafite-Rothschild, Château Latour, Château Margaux, Château Haut-Brion and Château Mouton-Rothschild. A classification of prestigious grands crus that dates back to 1855 and has remained unchanged since the promotion of Château Mouton-Rothschild in 1973.

Mythical appellations

A lifetime would not be enough to explore the diversity of the Bordeaux terroir. With no less than 57 appellations d'origine contrôlées (AOCs), the vineyards of Gironde are divided into three production regions.

The Sauternes, Barsac, Graves, Pessac-Léognan and Médoc AOCs are spread across the north of the department, on the left bank of the Garonne and Gironde rivers. The Médoc vineyard is itself divided into several AOCs.

On the other side, on the right bank of the Dordogne and Gironde rivers, is the Libournais - with its Saint-Emilion, Pomerol and Fronsac AOCs - Bourgeais and Blayais.

The Entre-deux-Mers AOC stretches between the valleys of the Garonne and Dordogne rivers, and the geographical and historical particularities of these areas give rise to wines with a different style, deeply rooted in their terroir.

Vignoble Bordeaux

Grape varieties that contribute to the richness and subtlety of Bordeaux wines

The red wines of Bordeaux are based on five grape varieties.

Among the most important, the famous Cabernet-Sauvignon is indispensable to the classified growths of the Médoc. Its pronounced tannins and the longevity that it allows are the keystone of the elegance that the wine will acquire over the years.

Merlot, also famous, plays a decisive role in the wines of the Médoc and Graves. Its suppleness and aromatic intensity make it an essential grape variety for the wines of Pomerol and Saint-Emilion.

Other black grape varieties are Cabernet Franc, Petit Verdot and Malbec.

For white wines, which are certainly in the minority in Bordeaux, there are three varieties.

Sémillon is used as a base for dry white wines and the best Sauternes.

Sauvignon Blanc is also becoming more and more important. Its aromatic expressions are perfect for the white Graves Crus and the Entre-deux-Mers AOCs.

Muscadelle is also appreciated in blends, but its fragility can sometimes be daunting.

The wines of Bordeaux set an example on the international scene.

The quality of their vintages is the talk of the world, arecognition that makes them a benchmark in the field of prestige wines.

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