First Bordeaux Purchase / Wine Label Terms

I bought my first Bordeaux Reds today.  I did some limited research…. well… what I’m really trying to say is that I did not purchase the wines on any real knowledge.  I picked bottles on based on other factors:  Location, Key Words, Info on Label, Price, Label and Bottle.  I will talk more about these factors when I actually blog about the wine.

After I got home, I thought it would be a good idea to get a better understanding of the label information.  Below, I’ve listed the terms that I encountered on todays labels:

Grand Vin –  marketing term that is not regulated.  It’s a way for the Chateau to say its their best wine and mark up the price.

Appellation – a geographical name (as of a region, village, or vineyard) under which a winegrower is authorized to identify and market wine.

Mis un Bouteille Chateau – Bottled at the Chateau

Terra Vitis –  environmental certification and is to be found in all the vine growing regions of France. Recognised by the French Ministry of Agriculture, Terra Vitis certification has been awarded the equivalence of level 2 environmental certification.

Bordeaux Superieur – Appellation that covers the entire Bordeaux region.  However, regulations are stricter than Bordeaux:  requires aging of at least 10 months, slightly higher alcohol levels and lower yield per hectare

Medoc – an AOC for wine in the Bordeaux wine region of southwestern France, on the Left Bank of the Gironde estuary that covers the northern section of the viticultural strip along the Médoc peninsula. –

Cru Bourgeois –  A classification system awarded annually, as a mark of quality, to wines rather than to châteaux, on the basis of an assessment of both production methods and the finished product. Any property in the Médoc may apply. The lists are published approximately 2 years after the vintage

Now that this post is done, I’m going to open up a bottle and see where the evening takes me : )


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