Sun. Nov 17th, 2019

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Wine 101 – Learning About Bordeaux

3 min read

If there is one region in the world that can be said to be the place that is on every wine lovers bucket list as far as a visit is concerned it must surely be the Bordeaux wine region. This French region has a long and enviable reputation for the production of some of the most iconic red wines in the world – primarily Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon.

It may be simplifying matters a little but it is possible to identify red wine from the Bordeaux region by the taste highlights that the wines typically present. If there are tastes that come forward in the wonderful products of Bordeaux they usually are a combination of black current, plums (and other ripe fruits) and hints of wet earth and what many wine experts claim is a taste similar to pencil lead and gravel. The Merlot’s and Cabernet Sauvignon’s from Bordeaux also have high levels of Tannin – which makes them ideal for aging. In fact many of the wines from this reason will happily age for decades providing an incredible drinking experience when they are finally uncorked.

Of course the individual wines from a specific cellar may boast more complex flavors and notes than those – or a different combination of flavors.

It is in fact possible to find Bordeaux wines that offer incredible value. It all depends on the vintage. The fact that the wines mature incredibly well is an exceptional reason to go out and find a Bordeaux bargain. Lay it down for an extended period of time and it will be transformed from a value offering into something superlative.

The complexity of the Bordeaux wines is due in no small part to the fact that they are blends created from a number of different types of grapes. In fact what is called the ‘Bordeaux Blend’ has achieved such fame for its balance and wonderful flavor that it has been copied by wineries all over the world – at least where the grape varieties used in the production of these wonderful Bordeaux wines can be grown. The blend consists of Cabernet Sauvignon grapes, Merlot varieties, Malbec, Cabernet Franc, Petit Verdot and a drop or two of Carménère.

The ideal way to enjoy Bordeaux wine is to take a little care prior to taking that first step. Ideally the wine should be served at a temperature of around 65 °F – which is a little under the usual room temperature. This is also the ideal temperature for storing your Bordeaux wines. The wine should be decanted and left to stand for at least 30 minutes prior to serving.

The hearty and full bodied nature of Bordeaux wine allows those who want to pair it with the ideal foods a lot of leeway. In fact due to the blended nature of the wines they are the perfect accompaniment to a variety of meals. The tannins means that Bordeaux can cut through the fatty nature of many rich meats and the fruity and sweet nature of the wine will actually be enhanced when it is served with proteins that contain a healthy proportion of fats. For many the combination of steak and Bordeaux is one that is almost impossible to resist. Try Filet Mignon to start off with. However, the wines are also ideal for serving with rich meats such as duck, roast pork, venison even chicken livers. These are robust wines and they will reward pairings with robust foods. Bordeaux ‘s also go well with a variety of cheeses.

If you want to start a journey of exploration when it comes to red wine there are worse places to start than with the wines of Bordeaux – take that first step on your personal journey of taste experiences today.

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