The region of Bergerac is located in Southwestern France, just to the east of of Bordeaux, along the Dordogne River. Bergerac has unfortunately been overshadowed by its more famous neighbor, but recently the region has been receiving a good deal of attention and acclaim for their rise in quality and the value found within. Monsieur Dubard, the proprietor of Chateau Laulerie, exemplifies this in his traditional and meticulous approach to grape growing and hands off approach in the cellar.
The Dubard family settled down as winemakers in the Bergerac region in the late ’70s. Their vines are situated on calcareous-clayish hillsides overlooking the right bank of the river Dordogne. With excellent South South-West exposure and a trellising system adapted to the spacing between rows, the grapes achieve balanced ripeness each year. Integrated farming techniques, including grass between vines, is environmentally responsible and helps to maintain the character of the terroir.
Offering the perfect balance of quality and value, Southwest, France is a recognized appellation that encompasses all wine regions in France’s southwestern corner (except for Bordeaux and Cognac, which merit their very own). Two of the more famous subregions here are Cahors, known for its Malbec, and Madiran, home of the robust Tannat grape. Bordeaux Blends are also popular red wines of the Southwest; Petit Manseng is the regions’s star autochthonous white variety.
Sometimes light and crisp, other times rich and creamy, Bordeaux White Blends typically consist of Sauvignon Blanc and Semillon. Often, a small amount of Muscadelle or Sauvignon Gris is included for added intrigue. Popularized in Bordeaux, the blend is often mimicked throughout the New World. Somm Secret—Sauternes and Barsac are usually reserved for dessert, but they can be served before, during or after a meal. Try these sweet wines as an aperitif with jamón ibérico, oysters with a spicy mignonette or during dinner alongside hearty Alsatian sausage.