Wrapping it Up in France

Well, it’s about time to wrap up the trip to Bordeaux. The last few days we were very lucky to be accompanied by glorious weather as well as our friends Sally and Michael. Fittingly enough, at least as far as we were concerned, we spent the end of our trip in St Emilion and Medoc where we tasted lots of wines. Mostly reds and an occasional Rose. We did have the occasional white Bordeaux, but for the most part the vineyards produce reds. 

Vineyards in St Emilion
The Village of St Emilion
Monolithic Church Tower in St Emilion

The wine business is very labor intensive and migrant workers, often from Spain, Italy and Portugal come to pick the grapes. The larger producers claimed to have about 70 to 80% of the grapes picked by machine. Some of the smaller ones (and some that were not so small) had their grapes picked and sorted by hand. 

Bordeaux is the the premiere wine producing region in France, and arguably the world. The region boasts thousands of producers, most of them small. Estimates of total production vary wildly. We heard estimates that ranged from 200 million bottles to 700 million, so take your pick. I suppose 200 million probably refers to the better quality wines. 

Wine Shop in St Emilion
Le Clos du Roy

About 90% of the wines produced are red, with the remaining 10% being white. The red wines rely primarily on three grapes: Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Cabernet Franc. A little but of Malbec finds its way into the mix as well.  (Lots of the Rose that is produced comes not from Bordeaux, but from Provence.) 

Chateau de Pressac., St Emilion
Insude Chateau de Camensac in Medoc

All in all a good time was had by all; and it’s probably not the last time we’ll be spotted in France. 

A Tasting in Medoc at Chateau Taillan

Au Revoir