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Frequently Asked Questions About Bordeaux Red


Bordeaux or Burgundy?


If you love your family and your job, and you are a stickler for cause and effect principle, you might likely want to stick with Bordeaux. Without doubts, both wines seat as two of France’s most popular but to keep it pretty simple, Bordeaux is blended while Burgundy is a single terroir - if you know what that means.


While Bordeaux is pretty expensive and old-fashioned, Burgundy seems to come along pretty well with the cost and style. So, the question isn’t really which is preferable, but which would be your choice against several parameters.


If you love wines, then any wine you can afford tastes great to you so should be your ultimate choice!


Where is Bordeaux Red Made?


Bordeaux red is made in southwest France.


What is the top grape blend for Bordeaux Red?


Cabernet Sauvignon

Information About Bordeaux Red


Bordeaux, which is the biggest wine producer in France, consists of the Left and Right Bank as its two major areas, both of which lie in the Gironde estuary and are divided by Garonne and the Dordogne rivers as its tributaries.


The left bank prides itself in producing blends of Cabernet Sauvignon, while the right bank is well known for Merlot.


For lovers of French wines, (and if this information helps tickle your appetite), Bordeaux red are terroir-driven, which means the farmers, the soil and even the climate all play specific roles in bringing about the uniqueness of Bordeaux Red. This is so profound because, aside from the varieties and ingredients, Bordeaux Reds are all about the region it is produced in, the farmers there and the blend it was made from. This is what you should be on the look-out for on the labels.


The Bordeaux region has been in the business of wine production for a very long time. The very first wines could be traced to the mid-first centuries when the first vines were planted by the Romans who ruled France at that time.


The French wine Bordeaux family produces some of the most expensive wines in the world. With a production of about 700 million bottles yearly, they surely dominate the wine market space.


Bordeaux in History


The history of Bordeaux wine can be traced to the year 60BC when the Romans conquered the area and took over rulership. The Romans planted the vineyards and began cultivating the grapes – this was the beginning of the making of Bordeaux wines!
Bordeaux was an ideal place for this farming because it had the required soil types and a perfect climate that, good for growing incredible tasting grapes. Also, Bordeaux was located in a strategic position that enhanced trade with the rest of the world, (since the Gironde and Garonne rivers served as means for shipping off bottles of Bordeaux wines).


The icing in the cake of this story is the wedding between Eleanor of Aquitaine and Henry Plantagenet, who later became King Henry II. The Bordeaux wine as served during the wedding and the marriage led to the British control over Aquitaine with an inclusion of Bordeaux.


This further strengthened the link between the drink and the royal family as well as boosted the exportation of the Bordeaux wines in exchange for goods.
Bordeaux soon became a royal drink, as the many descendants of the King became its biggest fan!


Bordeaux Red Blend


The introduction of blends in wine has had a phenomenal effect on the taste and aftertaste of different varieties. Prior to this time, eventualities like weather, soil, diseases, etc. had affected the production of wines terribly. Bordeaux red hadn’t been left out after suffering a frost outbreak in the 20th century.


Blends had minimized (to some extent) these weaknesses. Only six red grape cultivars were permitted to be grown due to the modern appellation laws in Bordeaux. All permitted varieties have very admirable qualities and are used in different proportions by different Chateaux.


Bordeaux red blend which is generally made from a blend of selected grapes is widely known for its strong structure and deep flavors which is commonly described as ”dark, plum and blackcurrant.”


Cabernet Sauvignon


This grape is invariably the most popular in the left bank. It totally represents one quarter of the plantings in Bordeaux. The tannic nature of this grape ensures that the Bordeaux red can stay for decades, yet not lose its taste or flavor. Its acidity is medium and the tiny-skinned grape is grown all over the world alongside Merlot.


Across the southern regions such as California and Chile, the vine is delicious on its own and can be passed for a tad fruitier. Cabernet Sauvignon wines are high in tannins, which is a good pair for healthy food. The proportion of this grape in the famous blend is the perfect recipe for making the best Bordeaux red wine.


Merlot


Merlot which comes from the right bank mostly serves as the major ingredient in blends, such as the infamous Petrus. It consists of almost two thirds of all the grapes grown in Bordeaux. Its softness and richness are an undeniable constituent in blending with other grapes. What it lost in color, fruitiness and tannin, it compensated for in robustness and fleshiness.


Merlot has little trouble with the soil type, it buds gracefully where the Cabernet Sauvignon only dares to survive. This plummy chum blends perfectly with Cabernet Sauvignon’s tannic structure which is often referred to as its partner-in-crime. The blend gives the wine its fruity and fleshiness.


Merlot is vastly affected by climate. With a hot climate like that of California, it is more fruit-forward and soft, but in cool regions and climate like that of Bordeaux, expect Merlot to be herbaceous and mineral-wise.


Cabernet Franc


This has something in common with Cabernet Sauvignon – both love well-drained and warm soils. Cabernet Franc is majorly grown in Saint Emilion, and also (though in less extents), in the Medoc and Graves.


Ripened Cabernet Franc gives out a relaxing fragrant note and is regarded as one of the oldest grape varieties in the Bordeaux family. A notable difference between Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon is the lightness, tenseness and great aroma it possesses.


It forms the famous Bordeaux blend alongside Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot – a mix that showcases the grapes’ attractiveness!


On its own, Cabernet Franc is popular for the production of tasty wines in tough areas like Long Island in New Zealand and Washington in the United States, while in warm regions like Anoju, Loire, the Bordeaux ripened grape provides the wine with a touch of silk!


Petit Verdot


When it comes to exotic and spicy notes, Bordeaux's Petit Verdot is the ultimate choice for a blend. Though its role in a blend is minor, it produces for the blend an extremely dark red wine which is highly tannic.


Aside from an “early budding and late-ripening challenge”, the Bordeaux-grown Petit Verdot is highly vulnerable to frost in the spring and early winter, which accounts for its difficulty in growing.


Perhaps the strongest point of Petit Verdot is the mouth-gripping tannins and rich dark color it gives to wines.


Malbec


Even though Malbec is almost synonymous to Argentina, this enticing grape is no doubt from the Bordeaux family in France. It never became popular, but was content to serve as one of the approved blends in Bordeaux varietals.


It is dark, with inky colors and an aroma that sends the drinker’s brain into a state of reminiscence, while the flavor resurrects memories of plum, black cherry and blackberry. Malbec are regarded as being more fruit-forward.


There are predictions that Malbec ”would climb the stairs to the hall of fame” in the near future.


Characteristics and Facts about Bordeaux Red


With its popularity and class, you might ask what is so special about the Bordeaux Red wine?
Well, aside from the fact that the wine has been around for over 2,000 years, and the quality and taste have not deteriorated over the years, we have interestingly sourced some great facts about the Bordeaux red wine.



  • The red Bordeaux blend is dry medium to full-bodied wine that is high in tannins and low in acidity.

  • Red wines from Bordeaux have blackcurrant and plum aromatic effervescence with pencil lead earthy notes. When the wine meets your taste buds, it produces an outburst of fruit notes and minerals that lead to prickly, savory, mouth-drying tannins.

  • Speaking about quality-to-price ratio, Bordeaux red is obviously a great choice that would give you a run for your money.

  • Bordeaux red is sometimes called “claret” in Britain which is a derivative of clairet, a dark rose exported in the 18th century from Bordeaux, though very uncommon now.

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