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This week I was fortunate to receive two bottles of wine from Bordeaux to review. When I agreed to review them, my memories went back to a trip I made in the late 80s to the Burgundy region of France. For a week, a friend and I enjoyed Bordeaux as an everyday indulgence. During that time period, Bordeaux imported to the US was quite expensive. However, things have changed!

With all of the great wines cropping up around the world, Bordeaux was labeled as an expensive, complicated wine for special occasions. Today, the winemakers of Bordeaux are intent on making wine sippers discover that it can be both an everyday occasion and a treat.

To accomplish this, EnjoyBordeaux.com has launched a campaign called “Today’s Bordeaux.” It’s for the wine drinker who wants to develop his palate and discover and uncover information about affordable Bordeaux. I was shocked to learn there are 100 Bordeauxs that sell for less than $35 a bottle. I’ll go on more about the site after I tell you about the experience I shared with Norm, tasting the two bottles we received.

Chateau Larose-Trintaudon (Haut Medoc) 2004 – $17.99

While pouring this into the glass, the vivid ruby color invites you to enjoy. When sniffing, I was able to distinguish the roasted coffee bean scent and Norm noticed the dark fruit aroma. We both felt it was smooth and had a freshness about it. We were both surprised it was less than $25.

We enjoyed this with rack of lamb and creamed spinach. However, the website suggests Glazed Grilled Duck Breast, Kobe Beef or Leg of Lamb, all of which would enhance your dining experience.

Clarendelle (Bordeaux, White) 2006 – $19.95

My preference is a nice red wine. So white wines have to be very good for me to enjoy.

Clarendelle is a combination of Semillon and Sauvigon Blanc with a fruity fragrance. The intermingling of lemon and grapefruit is what we picked up first with the surprise of a slight bit of pineapple. We enjoyed it sufficiently to finish the bottle and would recommend it.

Since getting ready to leave on a trip and not up to cooking, we enjoyed this with a cheese and mushroom omelet. The website suggests Asparagus in a Cream Sauce with Saute Sliced Shalot & Morel Mushrooms, Crab Cakes, Pasta with Lobster & Cauliflower Sauce, and Bleu D’Auvergne (Cow’s Milk Cheese). I know those dishes would be an exceptional pairing.

“Today’s Bordeaux” cost between $8 and $35. You’ll find them at wine stores that carry French wines.

If you want to learn more about these wines, I’d encourage you to visit EnjoyBordeau.com. It has a useful food pairing guide, where to buy database, and other helpful information.

As two people who enjoy wine, neither Norm nor I are wine experts. We are in the process of developing our appreciation and sharing it with you along the way. We’ve visited wineries and tasted around the world, but we still consider ourselves beginners in this endeavor. We can’t tell “complicated” from “uncomplicated” in the composition. What we can determine is if we like the flavor, smoothness, and after taste and what pairs well with various foods.

A “yes” for these two.

As a side note with the full disclosure ruling, these were a gift and I’m not obligated to write. It is my policy in this column to write about things I like. If I had not enjoyed these wines, I would have written the person sending them a note saying they did not match my palate.

I’d enjoy hearing what you think about today’s Bordeaux.

Big Blend Magazine

“Success” was Indie Finalist in the Writing and Publishing category of the 2009 Next Generation Indie Book Awards