Definition - What does Bordeaux mean?

Bordeaux is the most well-known wine region in France. Located near the Atlantic in south western France, it has over 10,000 châteaux, approximately 200 of which produce the great wines. It is estimated that wine grape vines were introduced into the Bordeaux agriculture in the 1st century with the Roman occupation. Though the region takes its name from the main city, there are no vineyards in the city proper. Instead, the vineyards spread for 60 miles outside and around the city boundaries. Three rivers - the Gironde, Garonne and Dordogne - run through the vineyards, creating the ideal terroir for wine grapes. Combined with its temperate climate and high humidity, Bordeaux is the poster child for wine regions across the globe.

WineFrog explains Bordeaux

You could write a book about Bordeaux. In fact, many have. Those books will tell you all of the minute details that make Bordeaux one of the most famous and sought after wine regions of the world. The winemakers of this region have a long history filled with tradition and passion. Terroir is a huge concept for winemakers in Bordeaux - after all, the regions success has always relied heavily on its great environment. The soil is composed of gravel, sandstone, clay and limestone, which creates a composition heavy in calcium. As such, winemakers aim to make terroir-driven wines that showcase the soil of their birth.

For people who don’t know much about Bordeaux, one query is the difference between the left bank and the right bank. The Gironde, Dordogne and Garonne rivers define the three main sub-appellations of the region. The Right Bank, situated on the right bank of Dordogne, in northern Bordeaux. The Right Bank surrounds the city of Libourne. Entre-deux-mers - meaning literally, between two seas - is the region between the Dordogne and Garonne rivers at the heart of Bordeaux. Finally, the Left Bank sits on the left bank of the Garone in south western Bordeaux -- this surrounds the city of Bordeaux itself. All Bordeaux wines are a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Malbec, Cabernet Franc, and Petit Verdot. The difference between left and right banks is that left bank wines are based around Cabernet Sauvingon, while right bank uses Merlot as its base.

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