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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 Pontet-Canet 2009
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Pauillac, Bordeaux, France
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    • WS96
    • D95
    4.7 36 Ratings
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    Chateau Montrose 2009
    Bordeaux Red Blends from St. Estephe, Bordeaux, France
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    Chateau Mouton Rothschild 2009
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Pauillac, Bordeaux, France
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    Chateau Canon 2009
    Bordeaux Red Blends from St. Emilion, Bordeaux, France
    • RP97
    • WE95
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    • WS93
    • D93
    4.6 7 Ratings
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    Chateau Pichon-Longueville Baron 2009
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Pauillac, Bordeaux, France
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    Chateau Duhart-Milon 2009
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Pauillac, Bordeaux, France
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    • WS92
    4.1 49 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $139.99
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    Chateau Leoville Poyferre (375ML half-bottle) 2009
    Bordeaux Red Blends from St. Julien, Bordeaux, France
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    Chateau Grand-Puy-Lacoste 2009
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Pauillac, Bordeaux, France
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    • RP92
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    Chateau Lynch-Bages 2009
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Pauillac, Bordeaux, France
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    4.9 9 Ratings
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    Chateau Branon 2009
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Pessac-Leognan, Bordeaux, France
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    Continuum (signed) 2009
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Napa Valley, California
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    • WE92
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    Chateau Lassegue 2009
    Bordeaux Red Blends from St. Emilion, Bordeaux, France
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    Verite Le Desir 2009
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Sonoma County, California
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    Chateau Les Carmes Haut Brion 2009
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Pessac-Leognan, Bordeaux, France
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    Chateau Ducru-Beaucaillou 2009
    Bordeaux Red Blends from St. Julien, Bordeaux, France
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    4.7 12 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $399.99
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    Chateau Leoville Poyferre 2009
    Bordeaux Red Blends from St. Julien, Bordeaux, France
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    3.8 12 Ratings
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    Chateau Figeac 2009
    Bordeaux Red Blends from St. Emilion, Bordeaux, France
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    Bond Vecina 2009
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Oakville, Napa Valley, California
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    Chateau Langoa Barton 2009
    Bordeaux Red Blends from St. Julien, Bordeaux, France
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    Chateau Gracia 2009
    Bordeaux Red Blends from St. Emilion, Bordeaux, France
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    Chateau Pichon Longueville Comtesse de Lalande 2009
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Pauillac, Bordeaux, France
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    Chateau Cos d'Estournel 2009
    Bordeaux Red Blends from St. Estephe, Bordeaux, France
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    4.2 8 Ratings
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    Villa Maria Reserve Gimblett Gravels Cabernet Sauvignon-Merlot 2009
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Hawkes Bay, New Zealand
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    Colgin Cariad 2009
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Napa Valley, California
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    Sloan Proprietary Red 2009
    Bordeaux Red Blends from Rutherford, Napa Valley, California
    • RP98
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