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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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  • Flat front label of wine
    Chateau Cos d'Estournel 1996
    Bordeaux Red Blends from St. Estephe, Bordeaux, France
    • V94
    • RP93
    • WS90
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    Currently Unavailable $199.97
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    Bernardus Marinus Estate 1996
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Monterey, Central Coast, California
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      Currently Unavailable $47.99
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      St. Clement Oroppas (3 Liter - signs of seapage) 1996
      Bordeaux Red Blends from Napa Valley, California
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        Chateau Beau Soleil 1996
        Bordeaux Red Blends from Pomerol, Bordeaux, France
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          Abreu Vineyard Madrona Ranch 1996
          Bordeaux Red Blends from Napa Valley, California
          • RP98
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          Currently Unavailable $349.00
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          349
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          Chateau Potensac 1996
          Bordeaux Red Blends from Medoc, Bordeaux, France
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            Currently Unavailable $39.99
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            39 99
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          • Chateau Tayac Saturneys Rouge 1996
            Bordeaux Red Blends from Bordeaux, France
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            • La Motte Millenium 1996
              Bordeaux Red Blends from South Africa
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              • Chateau Plagnac Medoc 1996
                Bordeaux Red Blends from Medoc, Bordeaux, France
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                • Chateau Citran Haut Medoc (half-bottle) 1996
                  Bordeaux Red Blends from Medoc, Bordeaux, France
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                    Dominus Estate (Autographed 3 Liter) 1996
                    Bordeaux Red Blends from Napa Valley, California
                    • RP95
                    • JS94
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                    Currently Unavailable $899.00
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                    899
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                    Chateau des Milles Anges Bordeaux 1996
                    Bordeaux Red Blends from Bordeaux, France
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                    • Chateau La Garde Graves 1996
                      Bordeaux Red Blends from Graves, Bordeaux, France
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                      • Robert Giraud Haut-Medoc 1996
                        Bordeaux Red Blends from Medoc, Bordeaux, France
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                          Chateau Fourcas-Hosten Listrac (375ML half-bottle) 1996
                          Bordeaux Red Blends from Bordeaux, France
                          • WS88
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                        • Buzet Baron d'Ardeuil 1996
                          Bordeaux Red Blends from Bordeaux, France
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                          • Chateau des Gravieres Graves Rouge 1996
                            Bordeaux Red Blends from Graves, Bordeaux, France
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                            • Chateau de Cruzeau Pessac-Leognan 1996
                              Bordeaux Red Blends from Graves, Bordeaux, France
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                                Opus One (375ML half-bottle) 1996
                                Bordeaux Red Blends from Napa Valley, California
                                • RP94
                                • D93
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                                Merryvale Profile 1996
                                Bordeaux Red Blends from Napa Valley, California
                                • WS91
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                                86 39
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                              • Chateau Mazeris Canon-Fronsac 1996
                                Bordeaux Red Blends from Fronsac, Bordeaux, France
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                                  Chateau Grand Mayne (375ML half-bottle) 1996
                                  Bordeaux Red Blends from St. Emilion, Bordeaux, France
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                                    27 99
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                                    Chateau Grand Mayne 1996
                                    Bordeaux Red Blends from St. Emilion, Bordeaux, France
                                    • RP89
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                                    Chateau La Cardonne Medoc 1996
                                    Bordeaux Red Blends from Medoc, Bordeaux, France
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                                      Chateau d'Armailhac 1996
                                      Bordeaux Red Blends from Pauillac, Bordeaux, France
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                                        Currently Unavailable $69.97
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