Bordeaux is on the tip of every winemaker’s tongue- and rightfully so. Ever since the Classification of 1855, Bordeaux has set the standards for winemaking and winemakers. Most people don’t realize that there are more wineries in Bordeaux alone than in all of California. That doesn’t by any means indicate that they are all great-or even good. But for whatever reason Bordeaux fell out of favor. It could have been the cost of the top estates going beyond the price point for many winelovers. The Chinese don’t think so- singlehandedly they have driven the costs sky high because they are willing to pay whatever it takes.
But Bordeaux is back and I can’t wait to bring our 2 groups there this May. A quick lesson in geography: there’s Bordeaux City and there’s Bordeaux County, something like NY City and NY State. There’s no wine made in Bordeaux City (altho Haut Brion is on the fringes of the town line.) You have to go outside the city of Bordeaux to find wine. Which direction? You could go North, South, East or even West and hit paydirt. Go South and you’ll be in Pessac, Graves or Sauternes; go East and there’s St. Emilion, Pomerol and Entre Deux Mers; go North and you find Medoc, home to the wineries of the aforementioned 1855 Classification. In fact there are so many wineries that you could visit 5 a day for a year and not see them all. It’s a bit frightening and probably scares many people away. Besides that, Bordeaux is way off the tourist path. So if you do ever get to Bordeaux, you won’t too many tourists competing for visits.
So go with Wine Lovers or go on your own, but go! It’s just too great a place to overlook for winelovers.