A treasure trove for wine lovers, the region of Bordeaux in south-west France has been holding the world’s attention since the boom years of the 18th century when it was a bustling trade port.
Here are some princely (not pricey) Bordeaux that bring pleasure to the palate, and remind us why our Gallic cousins should be invited to grace the table.
Offering excellent value, try Chateau David Beaulieu, Bordeaux Superior AOC 2010 (£6.49, Sainsbury’s) from the Entre-Deux Mers region between the rivers Dordogne and Garonne.
It’s rich with plenty of blackcurrant fruit, gentle spice, firm tannins and a pleasing finish. Enjoy with French bread and hard cheeses.
To the south-east end of Bordeaux, Chateau Malbat, 2010, Bordeaux (£7.50, www.tanners-wines.co.uk
) is and easy-drinking red from a ‘petit chateau’ which makes a good pizza or pasta wine.
A super trouper from the Medoc, Chateau Le Barrail 2010, Bordeaux (£7.99, Tesco) has a fragrant nose, robust fruit flavours of cassis and red berries with a firm, tannic grip.
It’s a good accompaniment to red meats.