Two of France’s most famous wine regions, Bordeaux and Burgundy, are renowned for their illustrious red wines, which have captivated wine lovers worldwide. Despite sharing a home country, these regions, and their wines, are vastly different due to unique climatic conditions, soils, and grape varieties. In this article, we take a closer look at the distinguishing features of Bordeaux and Burgundy reds.

Bordeaux: The Art of Blending

Bordeaux, located near the Atlantic coast, enjoys a maritime climate, which provides stable, mild conditions ideal for vine growing. The gravelly soil in this region is particularly suited to Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and a handful of other grape varieties, promoting excellent drainage, ultimately influencing the complex flavor profile of the wines.

Red wines from Bordeaux are usually blends, with Cabernet Sauvignon or Merlot playing the leading role depending on whether the wine hails from the Left Bank or the Right Bank. These wines are celebrated for their deep color, tannic structure, and complex bouquet of blackcurrant, plum, graphite, and often, a touch of elegant oak.

Burgundy: The Land of Pinot Noir

Burgundy, by contrast, is known for its continental climate, with colder winters and warmer summers. The limestone-rich soils in this region are the foundation for the world-renowned Burgundy reds made from Pinot Noir. Unlike Bordeaux, Burgundy red wines are varietal, showcasing the nuances of Pinot Noir exclusively.

Pinot Noir from Burgundy is adored for its lighter color, delicate structure, and complex aromas ranging from red cherries and strawberries when young, to game, leather, and mushrooms as they age.

Explore More with Florida Wine Academy

Understanding the nuances of these wine giants can be a gratifying journey, deepening your appreciation of wine. This exploration becomes more enriching when you learn about Bordeaux and Burgundy as part of our WSET Level 2 and Level 3 in Wines courses at the Florida Wine Academy.

Our interactive courses, led by experienced educators, delve into these regions’ unique characteristics, offering comprehensive knowledge and guided tasting sessions. The ability to discern between a Bordeaux and a Burgundy, to understand their making, and to appreciate their differences will truly elevate your wine tasting experience. Register today with Florida Wine Academy and let your wine journey unfold!