Bordeaux has a great reputation in the wine world. This region in France is one of the most famous, expensive, quality driven, and well known regions to wine professionals, wine lovers, and even wine newcomers. When it comes to buying Bordeaux many assume the pricier the better, “because its bordeaux… duh”!
Thats not to say the pricy wines from this region aren’t stunning, because they will be, but what about the Bordeaux’s we want to drink now?
Sure plenty are drinkable now but if I am about to spend $40.00+ on a Bordeaux (again I am a single pet parent living in NYC… so not all wine is in my budget) i’m going to want it for a special occasion or to want to let it age. Aging wine in a NYC apartment is like sharing a bathroom with four women who all have the same working hours; its not impossible, but it can leave you feeling anxious and crowded.
Côtes de Bordeaux represents 10% of the total production of Bordeaux wines and has 1,000 winegrowers, divided into 4 “terroirs”(regions). These regions within Bordeaux are: Blaye, Cadillac, Castillon and Francs. The winemakers expressed, what I thought was the best way to describe these wines. They themselves call these wines“Bordeaux in blue jeans”, which is almost comical because in a blind tasting these wines can stand up to some of the “big wigs in wine” aka pricier Bordeaux’s.
Many of you I am sure walk into a wine shop and may or may not be intimidated to walk into the French section. Not many wine lovers know about these smaller production areas, or assume because prices range from $13.00-28.00 they are not as good.
Tasting these wines first hand with Edouard Bourgeois, Head Sommelier at Café Boulud was just part of an unbelievable journey, that you as a wine lover need to get yourself on. We tasted through a range of these approachable, drinkable now, but certainly age-able wines with their producers. Accompanying these stellar wines were pairings by the talented Chef Byron Gomez.
His beautifully displayed, succulent, and juicy duck with cooked apricots was just the beginning. Chef Byron really considered these wines while pairing in which almost every dish matched at least 2-4 wines if not more.
Edouard explains, ” In wine, just like in music (he is a musician too), I’ve always liked when talented people express themselves by thinking differently”.
We’re definitely seeing new talent and modernization in many wine regions with rockstar younger winemakers, female producers, and more. It almost seems that the traditions, beauty, and terroir of Bordeaux still remains in the wines, however the newer more modern winemakers are really doing things differently, and producing a Bordeaux that is for everyone. This is just what the wine world needs!
Here is some important information about these little known but soon to be even more loved wine making regions. These wines are important, and although make up a small percent of the production in Bordeaux, you can still find them. Basically, we need these wines in our lives; if not for your wallet, then for your palate!
Like I said… the pairings here were of course something you may or may not make at home, but don’t be afraid. Some of these Bordeaux’s like the 2013 Château Du Grand Barrail Blanc (white bordeaux) would go great with some Pan Seared Scallops with Tomato and Blueberry Salad, or a Lemon and Roasted Tomato Arugula Salad. White Bordeaux can be tricky to find, as there isn’t a lot of it, but you can find it!
For my meat lovers, there are a ton of options for you in Côtes de Bordeaux. Some of my top picks from this region and tasting that can and will pair with Burgers, BBQ, and even international cuisines are: Château Lamothe De Haux Valentine Par Valentine 2011 ($28), Château Des Mille Anges 2011 ($18), and Château Cru Godard 2011 ($17).
Don’t be afraid to approach Bordeaux… it won’t bite, and if it does just give it a little room to breathe and you’ll have yourself some unbeatable wines at even better prices!