We're Fall-ing into Bordeaux with wine content creators, and sisters(!), Cecily and Natalia (a.k.a @YouHadMeAtBordeaux,) on our latest Beyond the Glass series. So pour yourself a glass and get ready to explore one of our favorite regions to warm up with as the cool autumn air moves in.
Let’s talk Bordeaux. Home to the first Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot vines, and to some of the most coveted French wines in the world. It is one of the world’s most popular wine regions, and, of course, one of my favorites.
Bordeaux (pronounced Bore-doe) is divided into two main land masses, lying to either side of the Gironde Estuary, appropriately called the The Left Bank and The Right Bank. The Left Bank is dominated by Cabernet Sauvignon vines, while The Right Bank is dominated by Merlot. These two banks have very different soils and climates, making them each perfectly suited for their respective varietals.
The Left Bank has rockier soils, making it more of a struggle for the vines to ripen their Cabernet grapes, which equals more character in the final product as well as incredible aging potential. The Right Bank soils are a little “easier” for their Merlot inhabitants to grow in, with clay and limestone dominating the soil composition, making for smoother, earlier drinking styles.
Cabernet Franc, Petit Verdot, Malbec, Sauvignon Blanc, Semillon, and Muscadelle are also grown in Bordeaux, but in far smaller quantities. The Left and Right are divided into smaller subregions and appellations, each classified by law based on varietals grown and product quality. The best way to really learn about and discern all the different wines of Bordeaux? Taste them.
One of the most famous appellations in Bordeaux is the Left Bank’s Haut-Medoc, which is home to some of the most famous wine growing communes in the world, including Margaux, Saint-Julien, Pauillac, and Saint-Estephe. Many Haut-Medoc wines are some of the best value Bordeaux, for those who would like to drink Bordeaux on a more casual basis (hello, it’s me!). The 90+ Cellars Reserve Series Haut-Medoc does the trick for me; fresh yet robust, with violet, plum and cedar notes.
90+ Cellars Collector's Series 2019 Pauillac is an excellent example of a young Bordeaux that is drinking beautifully now, but has excellent aging potential, at an extremely reasonable price point. Something a little more special! This wine is coming from Pauillac, which is an appellation on the Left Bank within Haut-Medoc. It is known for growing some of the very best red wines in the world. The wines from Paulliac are elegant, yet powerful, rich, complex, and full bodied. The 90+ Cellars offering is just that, with dense dark fruit, cedar, and coffee ground aromas, followed by fresh currants, blackberries, and plum on the well structured palate.
Well, you had me at - you get it. I think you know what I’m popping tonight! What about you?