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Bordeaux Blends

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

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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 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 lean towards a highly structured and earthy style whereas New World areas (as in the ones named above) tend to produce bold and fruit-forward blends. Either way, Bordeaux red blends generally 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 in specified percentages, the New World is free to experiment. Bordeaux blends in California may include equal amounts of Cabernet Franc and Malbec, for example. Occassionally a winemaker might add a small percentage of a non-Bordeaux variety, such as Syrah or Petite Sirah for a desired result.

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    Chateau Hosanna 2006
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Pomerol, Bordeaux, France
    • RP94
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    Chateau Pavie 2006
    Bordeaux Red Blends from St. Emilion, Bordeaux, France
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    • WE95
    • W&S91
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    Joseph Phelps Insignia 2006
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Napa Valley, California
    • RP95
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    • WE94
    4.6 28 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $209.97
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    Cayuse Flying Pig 2006
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Walla Walla Valley, Columbia Valley, Washington
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    Lail J. Daniel Cuvee 2006
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Napa Valley, California
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    Clos L'Eglise Pomerol 2006
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Pomerol, Bordeaux, France
    • RP92
    • WS91
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    Merryvale Profile 2006
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Napa Valley, California
    • WE94
    • RP90
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    Force Majeure Collaboration Series I Ciel du Cheval Vineyard Red 2006
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Red Mountain, Yakima Valley, Columbia Valley, Washington
    • RP95
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    Blackbird Vineyards Illustration Proprietary Red (stained label) 2006
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Oak Knoll District, Napa Valley, California
    • RP91
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    Haras de Pirque Albis 2006
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Maipo Valley, Chile
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    Pahlmeyer Napa Valley Proprietary Red 2006
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Napa Valley, California
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    • CG92
    • WS90
    4.6 11 Ratings
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    Chateau Lynch-Bages 2006
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Pauillac, Bordeaux, France
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    • W&S90
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    Ridge Monte Bello 2006
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Santa Cruz Mountains, California
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    • W&S92
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    Harlan Estate 2006
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Oakville, Napa Valley, California
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    Chateau St. Jean Cinq Cepages 2006
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Sonoma County, California
    • WE92
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    Tenuta Sette Ponti Oreno 2006
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Tuscany, Italy
    • WS96
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    Beaulieu Vineyard Reserve Tapestry 2006
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Napa Valley, California
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    4.3 10 Ratings
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    Peter Michael Les Pavots (3 Liter - autographed) 2006
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Knights Valley, Sonoma County, California
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    Chateau Certan de May 2006
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Pomerol, Bordeaux, France
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    Quilceda Creek Columbia Valley Red 2006
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Columbia Valley, Washington
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    Keenan Mernet Reserve 2006
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Spring Mountain District, Napa Valley, California
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    Chateau Canon La Gaffeliere 2006
    Bordeaux Red Blends from St. Emilion, Bordeaux, France
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    Tetra Red 2006
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Napa Valley, California
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    Chateau Latour 2006
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Pauillac, Bordeaux, France
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    Andrew Will Winery Champoux Vineyard Horse Heaven Hills 2006
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Columbia Valley, Washington
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    • RP93
    • WS92
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