The Bordeaux producers group rolled into town yesterday with a roadshow tasting of 100 Bordeauxs priced under $25. I went feeling more dutiful than optimistic, but walked out at the end both surprised and impressed by some of the wines.
Bordeaux, of course, is a vast region—it produces some 60 to 70 million cases of wine per year, only 3 to 5% of which is the classified growths and top St. Emilions and Pomerols that US wine buyers typically associate with the region. To geek out a bit more on the factoids, the region has more than 9,000 wine producers, 300,000 acres of vineyards and 57 different appellations. (And Merlot is the most widely planted grape variety—take that, Sideways!)