After experiencing some of my favorite wine regions of Italy, I was eager to get back to France and check out Bordeaux. I’ve watched a few documentaries on the complexities of Bordeaux wines but certainly wouldn’t call myself an expert. You pretty much can only find French wines in the shops of France and I would go in there clueless and end up not really enjoying the wine that I picked. And so a wine tour was in order to learn more about these world-renowned wines.
I decided to team up with A la Français and their Bordovino team to explore the right-bank wines of Bordeaux and the Saint Emilion region. Our tour took us from a gorgeous, small family run chateau, then off to the village of Saint Emilion and then to a second, larger chateau. I was excited to see the countryside of Bordeaux and all of the gorgeous vineyards that you always see in the pictures. I was most excited to taste and get the secrets behind what is known as some of the best wine in the world!
We met up with our guide, Quentin, in the center of Bordeaux before boarding our comfortable little van with two other couples and heading out to the vineyards of Saint Emilion. I really enjoy smaller wine tours because they are more intimate and allow you to meet new friends from all over with the same interest: wine. During our drive, Quentin talked with us about the history of the right-bank, the terroir (environmental factors) of the entire wine region and details about the winemaking process.
We arrived in the appellation known as Pomeral at Chateau Beauregard for our first tour and tasting. We learned about the history of the chateau and the updates that they have made recently to create delicious, organic wines. After the tour we played a fun little game with Quentin to test our sense of smell to learn more about wine tasting and then were able to actually taste some of the amazing wines produced by Chateau Beauregard. Right-bank Bordeaux wines are comprised mainly of Merlot and Cabernet Franc but can have a blend of up to 6 different grape varieties.
Following our visit to the first chateau we sidetracked to the village of Saint Emilion where Quentin walked us around and gave us a brief history of this beautiful little town! If ever you wanted the perfect place to take Instagram-worthy photos of France, this is definitely the place. You can also head down deep into some of the ancient cellars still being used today for the storage of Bordeaux wines.
Our final stop on the tour was to Chateau Fombrauge, a much larger estate with a rich history. After a tour of their gorgeous estate and a meeting with their house cat, we enjoyed a tasting of some of their delicious wines paired with cheese, meat and chocolate to finish our day.
If you ever visit Bordeaux (which I highly suggest) then I recommend touring with Bordovino for wine tours in the area. They offer options in Saint Emilion and Medoc as well as some fun experiences including bike tours and gourmet tours with tastings. I also wanted to suggest that if you’re interested in learning more about wine production to watch the documentary SOMM: Into the Bottle on Netflix!
Special thanks to Bordovino for providing the tour! I was not compensated for this post and all opinions are my own.