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Bordeaux Blends

One of the world’s most classic and popular styles of red wine...

One of the world’s most classic and popular styles of red wine, Bordeaux-inspired blends have spread from their homeland in France to nearly every corner of the New World, especially in California, Washington, and Australia. Typically based on either Cabernet Sauvignon or Merlot and supported by Cabernet Franc, Malbec, and/or Petit Verdot, these are sometimes referred to in the US as “Meritage” blends. In Bordeaux itself, Cabernet Sauvignon dominates in wines from the Left Bank of the Gironde river, while the Right Bank focuses on Merlot. Often, blends from outside the region are classified as being inspired by one or the other.

In the Glass

Cabernet-based, Left-Bank-styled wines are typically more tannic and structured, while Merlot-based wines modeled after the Right Bank are softer and suppler. Cabernet Franc can add herbal notes, while Malbec and Petit Verdot contribute color and structure. Wines from Bordeaux can be bold and fruit-forward or restrained and earthy, while New World facsimiles tend to emulate the former style. In general, Bordeaux red blends can have aromas and flavors of black currant, cedar, plum, graphite, and violet, with more red fruit flavors when Merlot makes up a high proportion of the blend.

Perfect Pairings

Since Bordeaux red blends are often quite structured and tannic, they pair best with hearty, flavorful, and fatty meat dishes. Any type of steak makes for a classic pairing. Equally welcome with these wines would be beef brisket, pot roast, braised lamb, or smoked duck.

Sommelier Secret

While the region of Bordeaux is limited to a select few approved grape varieties, the New World is free to experiment. Bordeaux blends in California may include Syrah, Petite Sirah, Zinfandel, or virtually any other grape deemed worthy by the winemaker. In Australia, Shiraz is a common component.

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  • Jack Nicklaus Golden Bear Reserve (1.5 Liter Magnum - OWC) 2009
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Napa Valley, California
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    • Chateau Pavie Decesse 2006
      Bordeaux Red Blends from St. Emilion, Bordeaux, France
      • RP94
      • WS91
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    • Le Dome 2011
      Bordeaux Red Blends from St. Emilion, Bordeaux, France
      • RP94
      • WE94
      • JS94
      • V92
      • WS91
      Currently Unavailable $129.98
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    • Almaviva Red 2013
      Bordeaux Red Blends from Maipo Valley, Chile
      • JS97
      • RP94
      • WS92
      Currently Unavailable $99.99
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    • Bevan Cellars Ontogeny 2013
      Bordeaux Red Blends from Napa Valley, California
      • RP95
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      195
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    • Merryvale Profile 2006
      Bordeaux Red Blends from Napa Valley, California
      • WE94
      • RP90
      Currently Unavailable $95.00
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    • Vieux Chateau Certan 2011
      Bordeaux Red Blends from Pomerol, Bordeaux, France
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      • JS96
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      • RP91
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      200
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    • Ornellaia 2013
      Bordeaux Red Blends from Bolgheri, Tuscany, Italy
      • JS98
      • RP96
      • D95
      • WS93
      • WE91
      Currently Unavailable $179.99
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      240
      179 99
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    • Harlan Estate 2011
      Bordeaux Red Blends from Oakville, Napa Valley, California
      • JS97
      • V94
      • WS93
      • RP93
      Currently Unavailable $649.97
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    • Tolaini Picconero Tenuta Montebello 2010
      Bordeaux Red Blends from Tuscany, Italy
      • RP94
      • WE94
      • JS94
      • WS90
      Currently Unavailable $114.99
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      150
      114 99
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    • Chateau Malescot St. Exupery 2010
      Bordeaux Red Blends from Margaux, Bordeaux, France
      • RP95
      • JS95
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      • V93
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      130
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    • Catena Zapata Nicolas 2010
      Bordeaux Red Blends from Mendoza, Argentina
      • RP95
      • V94
      • WE93
      • WS92
      Currently Unavailable $104.99
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      135
      104 99
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    • Chateau Pontet-Canet 2012
      Bordeaux Red Blends from Pauillac, Bordeaux, France
      • JS93
      • RP93
      • WE92
      • WS92
      Currently Unavailable $89.99
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      115
      89 99
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    • Ornellaia (1.5 Liter Magnum) 2013
      Bordeaux Red Blends from Bolgheri, Tuscany, Italy
      • JS98
      • RP96
      • D95
      • WS93
      • WE91
      Currently Unavailable $429.99
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      549
      429 99
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    • Pascual Toso Magdalena Toso 2013
      Bordeaux Red Blends from Mendoza, Argentina
      • WS93
      • WE93
      • RP93
      • JS92
      Currently Unavailable $104.99
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      130
      104 99
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    • Inglenook Rubicon 2012
      Bordeaux Red Blends from Rutherford, Napa Valley, California
      • JS95
      • RP95
      Currently Unavailable $169.99
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      210
      169 99
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    • Castello dei Rampolla d'Alceo 2011
      Bordeaux Red Blends from Tuscany, Italy
      • V97
      • JS97
      • RP95
      • WE95
      • WS93
      Currently Unavailable $199.99
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      242
      199 99
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    • Chateau Cheval Blanc 2011
      Bordeaux Red Blends from St. Emilion, Bordeaux, France
      • RP95
      • WS94
      • JS94
      • WE92
      Currently Unavailable $579.00
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      700
      579
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    • Italics Fifteen Appellations Meritage 2011
      Bordeaux Red Blends from Napa Valley, California
        Currently Unavailable $99.99
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      • Dominus Estate 2011
        Bordeaux Red Blends from Yountville, Napa Valley, California
        • W&S94
        • JS93
        • V90
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        179
        149 99
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      • Joseph Phelps Insignia 2014
        Bordeaux Red Blends from Napa Valley, California
        • V97
        • JS97
        • RP96
        Currently Unavailable $209.99
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        250
        209 99
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      • Merryvale Profile 2013
        Bordeaux Red Blends from Napa Valley, California
        • WE93
        • RP92
        • WW92
        • WS91
        Currently Unavailable $169.99
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        200
        169 99
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      • Tenuta San Guido Sassicaia 2013
        Bordeaux Red Blends from Bolgheri, Tuscany, Italy
        • JS98
        • WE98
        • RP97
        • V96
        • WS95
        • WW94
        • W&S93
        Currently Unavailable $199.99
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        235
        199 99
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      • Kapcsandy Family Winery State Lane Vineyard Estate Cuvee 2012
        Bordeaux Red Blends from Yountville, Napa Valley, California
        • RP96
        • V95
        • JS94
        • WS93
        Currently Unavailable $149.99
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        175
        149 99
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      • Pahlmeyer Napa Valley Proprietary Red 2013
        Bordeaux Red Blends from Napa Valley, California
        • RP96
        • JS96
        • V94
        • WS93
        • WW93
        Currently Unavailable $149.99
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        175
        149 99
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        1
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