Bordeaux wines refer to any wines produced in the Bordeaux region of southwestern France. Most Bordeaux are reds, but also produced in the region are some whites and a small smattering of rose. Winemaking in this region was originally introduced by the Romans for local consumption, mostly Roman soldiers, and production has been continuous since then. Climate plays a major role in this continuity, as well as a solid limestone soil base supplies needed minerals to the vines, while the moist, warm air feeds the grapes a steady diet of humidity so they mature plump and flavorful.
Bordeaux is actually a blend of what is known as “permitted” grapes. These include Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Merlot and Malbec. Each brings a distinct flavor and aroma to the wine, giving it a hearty, full-bodied taste. Generally I have found French wines to be lighter than their Italian brethren, but a good Bordeaux can certainly hold its own. This blend in particular has a dark, purplish hue which reflects light beautifully and invites one to take a sip. And make no mistake, this is a sipping wine, made to be enjoyed slowly. It does pair well with foods, beef ribs, filets especially, but is best enjoyed and savored on its own. A strong hint of berries, blackberries especially, along with a rich almost smokey flavor adds to the experience which can only be called delightful.
This wine is also a family affair. Alain and Bernadette Aubert oversee production and keep alive family traditions that have been sustained since the 1750’s. They run the estate with their three daughters and center it on an estate called the Chateau de Ribebon which was once used as a hunting lodge for King Louis XIV. So there is a history there, a tradition, a value which transcends quantity and profit. The family has long felt that quantity can definitely hurt the quality of the product. “Quality is not possible with quantity, and I want my wine to capture the essence of our fantastic terroir.” This is the motto of this family handed down through seven generations showing a deep respect for the process as well as the grape itself.
Because this wine has enough flavor and bouquet it will pair well with most game dishes as well as more domesticated cuts. A porterhouse steak or a beef rib would be perfect to augment this wine. But venison or boar would also complement and the flavor would not be lost or overtaken as the wine is sipped. The flavors would meld to a taste sensation not to be soon forgotten.
International awards for this wine range from International Wine Report which rated this vintage a very respectable 91 overall points to a 90 rating from Wine Spectator. At about $14 a bottle it is a true value. Also, I almost neglected to mention that it does air very well, meaning it does well if decanted. It is also good the second day, if you do not finish the bottle. Overall, I give this wine a 9.0 out of a possible 10 grapes for taste and value. So enjoy it!