With more than 7,000 chateaux, France’s Bordeaux region is the most important wine producing region in the world. As well as being the basis for Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot-based wines everywhere, Bordeaux wines are acknowledged to be among the world’s best reds—according to experts and amateurs alike.
The wine region of Bordeaux is comprised of many smaller areas and encompasses both banks of the Gironde estuary in southwest France, as well as the land bordering the Garonne and Dordogne Rivers, which split off from the Gironde in the southern Medoc area. Generally, Bordeaux's best red wines are from seven major (and well-known) appellations: Pauillac, Saint-Estephe, Saint-Julien, and Margaux in the greater Medoc region, Graves to the south of the city of Bordeaux—in the region’s center, and Saint-Emilion and Pomerol toward the east. The large Graves region, as well as being the birthplace of claret, is home to many of the best dry whites. Premium sweet wines are made in Sauternes and Barsac, which are also within the Graves appellation but toward the south.
In understanding the multitude of Bordeaux wines, experts tend to talk about the right and left banks of the Gironde River. Generally, red wines from the river’s left bank, especially from Bordeaux’s Medoc region, are based on Cabernet Sauvignon, mixed with varying amounts of Merlot and Cabernet Franc and, occasionally, a spot of Petit Verdot and Malbec. These reds are known to be firm and dry, with a substantial tannic spine, and are frequently austere in their youth. They are also among the world’s longest-lived. The Graves’ gravel and sand soil content contribute to more texture early and roasted accents of hot stones, smoke and tobacco.
The softer Merlot grape is the foundation for right bank wines, mostly to the town of Libourne’s eastern side. These wines are fleshier in general than wines from the left bank and are more pliant. They are also accessible at an earlier age—though the best of them can improve in bottle for decades.
Wine Enthusiast, 95 points: (WE93-95 points) A rich and structured wine, this combines both the ripeness of mature Merlot and a solid, dry texture. It's full, with a good future.
jamessuckling.com, 93 points: A refined and pretty wine for the vintage with a salty, chalky and mineral character on the nose and palate. Medium body, firm tannins and a fresh finish. This needs two or three years to soften. Better in 2020.
Antonio Galloni's Vinous, 92 points: (AG89-92 points) The 2013 Fleur Cardinale is a huge wine. Blood orange, pomegranate, white pepper and bright red cherries all explode from the glass. Unapologetically rich and intense, the 2013 is beautifully layered and...
Wine Enthusiast, 92 points: Light and fruity, this
wine has attractive acidity and layers of red berry
fruits. The silky tannins are present, although light
and dominated by the fruitiness of the wine. It’s
fresh, packed with acidity and likely...
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate, 90 points: The 2013 La Petite Eglise, which Denis Durantou poured from magnum since this is how the entire production was bottled, has a precise and fragrant bouquet with crushed stone scents filtering through the red berry fruit...
jamessuckling.com, 97 points: This is vibrant and gorgeous with dried pineapple, honey and cream. Full body, plenty of energetic structure and a long, long finish. Goes on for minutes. Fantastic Aile. Sauvignon blanc with semillon. Structured!
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate, 94 points: This estate is owned by the brilliant Michel Gracia, so it’s a shame so little of this wine was produced, but the vineyard itself is microscopic. Approximately three acres are planted on sandy and clay-like soils with a...
Wine Enthusiast, 94 points: Structured
and dense, this wine revels in its tension
and tight texture. While there are plenty of
black fruits, the dry core of tannins and the rich,
perfumed character show this wine’s best quality.
It is well...
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate, 90 points: The 2013 Beauséjour (Duffau Lagarrosse) offers impressive intensity given the growing season with crisp and pure dark cherries, raspberry coulis and subtle earthy bordering upon loamy scents. The oak here is nicely...
Wine Enthusiast, 95 points: Smoky aromas and layers of tannin and
fruit give this wine great complexity. It is smooth,
juicy and fresh while also having perfumed tannins
and an elegant, lightly mineral structure from the
Cabernet Franc. The...
Wine Enthusiast, 91 points: With
great freshness, this is an attractive, fruity
wine with final ripe berry flavors that are delicately
leavened and given weight by tannins. There is already
a drinkable balance from the fruit, although
Wine Enthusiast, 92 points: Continuing
the impressive improvements at this
château even in a tough year, this wine is ripe, full of
structured tannins and blackberry fruits. It is fresh,
a sign of the vintage, but it has concentration as
Showing 15 of 48 wines
We are having problems processing your request.
Please contact our sales office between 9 AM and 5 PM (PST) for further assistance at 1.888.859.4637.
I love your website! I've never had so much fun shopping for wine online before. The in-depth descriptions really make this an educational process too. The overall functionality of the site is top notch!
-Barry T., June 2017