Top 10 wine attractions: BordeauxBy Lauren Eads
Bordeaux is one of the world’s most famous wine regions, home to some of the oldest traditions and châteaux.
You could spend weeks trailing around the region’s 116,160 hectares of vineyards, 57 appellations, 10,000 wine-producing châteaux and 13,000 grape growers.
Not to mention its countless wine bars, museums and tasting tours.
An organised tour of a Bordeaux vineyard is the perfect way immerse yourself in the region.
But it is worth mentioning that many vineyards require bookings in advance and are often closed on weekends, so do plan ahead or book onto an organised tour to avoid disappointment.
Scroll through for 10 of the region’s wine based highlights…
Bordeaux Wine and Trade Museum
Discover the history of Bordeaux wines form the heart of its historical wine trading port. The tiny Museum of Bordeaux Wine and Trade is located in the building of a old wine merchant where visitors can trawl through the history of the wine trade with artefacts, videos and a guided tour, followed by a personal wine tasting and presentation of wines of the region.
Cellier des Chartrons, 41 Rue Borie, 33000 Bordeaux
Château de Pitray
Just 8km from Saint-Emilion, Château de Pitray has been owned by the de Boigne family for nearly 600 years and covers more than 37 hectares. Specialising in Merlot and Cabernet Franc, Château Pitray produces 240,000 bottles of wine annually. It is open to all wishing to learn more about wine, or who simply wish to take in its impressive surroundings.
33350 Gardegan-et-Tourtirac, France
Vinothèque of Bordeaux
If you are looking to invest in a Bordeaux during your visit then the Vinothèque of Bordeaux is the place to go. This huge warehouse carries nearly 1,000 bottles of Bordeaux from across the region – hand-picked by its in-house sommeliers.
8 Cours du 30 Juillet , Bordeaux 33000
Château Mouton Rothschild
The famed Château Mouton Rothschild is located in Pauillac, about 50km northwest of Bordeaux, with a vineyard that grows a variety of grapes including Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, and Petit Verdot varieties. The estate’s vineyard stretches across 84 hectares and is well-known for having produced some of the world’s mostly highly regarded Bordeaux wines. Visits are by appointment only.
Le Pouyalet, 33250 Pauillac, France
For high-end wines head to Max Bordeaux – where you can taste and buy top Grands Crus from the likes of Latour, Ausone, Cheval Blanc and Lafite. This merchant showcases up to 50 of Bordeaux’s best grands crus at any one time with the chance to buy a tasting card, for €25, €50 or €100, which can be inserted into their Enomatic vending machines. A 2.5cl pour will cost you about €20 to €30.
14 Cours de l’Intendance, 33000 Bordeaux
The Château Pape-Clément harvested its 700th vintage in 2006 making it the oldest planted vineyard in the Bordeaux. Château Pape-Clément has 30 hectares of vineyards growing predominantly Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot grapes but also small quantities of Sauvignon Blanc, Sémillon and Muscadelle.
216 Avenue Docteur Nancel Penard, 33600 Pessac
Château d’Yquem is located in the Sauternes area of Bordeaux, known for its sweet wines of which Château d’Yquem is known as the pinnacle. Its vineyard has 126 hectares within the Sauternes appellation, though only 100 hectares are in production at any one time. The vines include 80% Sémillon and 20% Sauvignon Blanc and produce around 65,000 bottles each year.
Enjoy a day trip to Chateau Soutard and visit its 18th century country house overlooking Saint-Emilion. Take a guided tour through its 27-hectare estate which boasts 22 hectares of vines, 75% located on a limestone plateau, growing predominantly Merlot and Cabernet Franc grapes. Château Soutard can trace its history back to 1775 and has been owned by the same family since 1811.
1 Lieu-Dit Soutard, BP4, 33330 Saint-Emilion
Bordeaux Wine School
Set up in 1989, the Bordeaux Wine School offers wine-country weekend tours and onsite two-hour tasting courses – perfect for those looking to buff up on their wine knowledge in one of the world’s most renowned regions.
1 Cours du XXX juillet, 33075 Bordeaux Cedex
Wine Civilisation Centre
Opening in 2016, the The Cité des Civilisations du Vin is described by the Bordeaux Tourism Board as “neither a museum nor a theme park, but an original concept which lies somewhere in between” and will take visitors on a tour of the region’s history of wine and civilisation.
7 Rue Duffour Dubergier, 33000 Bordeaux