The Wine Regions in Bordeaux
The wine regions in Bordeaux are a composition of districts and subdivisions, each governed by a different set of rules and regulations dictating the production of Bordeaux wine. The Bordeaux wine regions are all of varying shapes and sizes and cover the entire area of the Gironde department of Aquitaine. Bordeaux is the second largest wine growing region in the world, eclipsed only by the Languedoc region, also located in France.
Bordeaux Regions and Appellations
The city of Bordeaux is located in the west of France, and is undoubtedly the premier producer of red wine in the world today. With the Atlantic Ocean off to the west, the Bordeaux wine growing regions are tucked slightly inland. The entire region is segregated into two major subdivisions by the Gironde river, commonly referred to as the left bank and the right bank.
The left bank and right bank of Bordeaux each display specific traits and common characteristics in terms of wine; for example, the left bank predominantly uses cabernet sauvignon, whereas the right bank wines are more merlot based. While each chateau produces a fine wine in their own way, there are a set of laws surpassing regional boundaries that govern the entire production process; from the grape selection and planting density, pruning and picking methods, alcoholic and sugar content, as well as the production techniques like maturing and bottling of wine.
An area, or region, that is governed by a set of rules and regulations, dictating the specific wine growing terms and conditions, is referred to as an appellation. There are currently around 60 appellations in the region of Bordeaux, and these are administered by the regional AOC’s (Appellation d’Origin Controlee) a governing authority, whose requirements and regulation standards must be met as a wine producer in the Bordeaux region.
While Bordeaux regions are differentiated by demarcation of land, appellations are defined as administrative areas as set by the governing authorities. Consequently, when dealing with fine wines, the geographical origin is less important than the appellation, as the appellation will reveal important aspects about the wine, which may or may not be specific to a Bordeaux region.
Map of the Regions in Bordeaux
The premier wine growing regions in Bordeaux are defined as follows:
The origin of a bottle of fine wine speaks volumes as to the quality, style, grape composition, terroir conditions, alcoholic content and planting and production techniques used to create the wine in question. More important than the specific Bordeaux region is the appellation it comes from, as the AOC’s dictate almost all aspects of the wine production. Hence, the heritage of luxury wine is of great significance for consumers as well as investors, particularly when dealing with high quality investment wines.
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