These wonderful wines showed up at my home some weeks ago and it seemed a gift from heaven during these hard times. I love wines made from these three grapes – Semillion, Sauvignon Blanc, Muscadelle, in all of their forms in Bordeaux and these four are such exceptional examples. Sweet Bordeaux is often thought to work only as dessert wines but in my view that is selling them short. Yes they can pair with sweet foods but they also work with spicy ones, complex dishes that need to have some offset of sweetness, cheese plates or as an aperitif. Off dry wines or those with higer levels of residual sugar can do wonders at your table. Check out hosts Linda Whipple’s Preview post here and Jeff Burrow’s coverage of the topic here.
Sweet Bordeaux come from an area of Bordeaux between two rivers, the Garonne and the Citron, the Entre-Deux-Mer appellaton among others
There are eight AOCs: Bordeaux Supérieur, Côtes de Bordeaux Saint-Macaire, Sainte-Croix-du-Mont, Loupiac, Cadillac, Premières Côtes de Bordeaux, Cérons and Bordeaux Moelleux.
Chateau Tanesse – Lion de Tanesse – Bordeaux AOC 2019 SRP $15
This wine comes from vineyards in Langoiran on clay-limestone slopes with gravel. The wine is made from 85% Sémillon and 15% Sauvignon. Aged in stainless steel, it had a lovely bouquet and mouthfeel.
Tasting Note: Beautiful clear well balanced semi sweet wine that had floral and white fruit that works as an aperitivo.
Pairing: With cheese or with Asian cuisines. I think it would be perfect with Indian food, a delicious Chicken Tika Masala or Tandoori Chicken.
Chateau La Hargue – Bordeaux Moelleux 2019 $15
This winery has been in the same family since 1954 and has always been planted to white varieties. The soils are loam and favored by their proximity to water. Thanks to a sunny microclimate with good diurnal temperature changes, these white varieties develop beautiful floral and fruit aromas and reach their potential.
Tasting note: Lovely white wine with loads of texture thanks to skin contact maturation for several hours as well as lees stirring.
Pairing: This wine made me want to have Sushi and Sashimi. I thought it would be perfect with these clean foods and offset the flavors while not overwhelming them.
Chateau Dauphine Rondillon – Loupiac 2015 $42
This wine was a delicate and special wine made from the oldest vines of Chateau Dauphine Rondillon which were planted in 1910. A late harvest wine, The “Cuvée d’Or du Château Dauphiné-Rondillon” comes from vines 100 year old vines grown on clay and gravel soils. The grapes here are impacted by Botrytis cinerea. It is aged for one year in one year old barrels which then are blended together.
Tasting note: Delicate gold with intense and complex aromas of dried nuts, citrus and dried fruits together with wood undertones.
Pairing: Would be lovely with a dry dessert such as Brisolona, or a fruit tart.
Chateau La Rame Sainte-Croix-du-Mont AOC 2016 $35
This blend is 95% Sémillon and 5% Sauvignon which comes from 50 year old vines affected by Botrytis Cinerea. The grapes are pressed within two hours after harvest. The must ferments for 2-3 weeks at controlled temperatures and then ages in stainless steel vats + 30% in oak barrels.
Tasting Note: Golden in color with honeysuckle and sweet fruit notes come from the bouquet. On the palate the wine was rich and intense with more honey and a touch of oak but also mineral notes and sapidity.
Pairing: This one would be fantastic with shellfish such as lobster and with fish.
Sweet Bordeaux Pairing Ideas from the French Winophiles
Take a look below at all the great pairing ideas tried by our group! We love for you to join us in our chat on Saturday Nov. 21 at 11am EDT. Just look for #Winophiles on Twitter!
- Camilla at Culinary Adventures with Camilla: “Surprise! Pairing Spicy and Savory Dishes with Sweet Bordeaux”
- Terri at Our Good Life: “Spicy Hot Tacos, and a Blood Orange Appertif with Sweet Bordeaux”
- Martin at ENOFYLZ: “Pairing Golden Bordeaux with Southern Fare”
- Lauren at The Swirling Dervish: “Golden Bordeaux Meets Savory Pumpkin and Smoked Bacon Tart: a Delicious Thanksgiving Twist!”
- David at Cooking Chat: “Pairings for Sweet Bordeaux Wine”
- Katrina at The Corkscrew Concierge: “Golden Bordeaux Delights in Louisiana’s Cajun and Creole Cuisine”
- Payal at Keep the Peas: “Four Sweet Bordeaux Wines with Four Courses”
- Jane at Always Ravenous: “Golden Sweet Bordeaux Wines: Tasting and Pairings”
- Wendy at A Day in the Life on the Farm: “Hot Chocolate and Halva Pudding paired with Lion De Tanesse L’Amour”
- Jeff at foodwineclick: “Sweet Bordeaux Meets the Smoke”
- Jill at L’OCCASION : “Sweet Bordeaux Wines Aren’t Just for Dessert”
- Lynn at Savor the Harvest: “Sweet Bordeaux Wines Get Savory Pairings”
- Rupal at Syrah Queen: “Sweet Bordeaux Is A Sweet Delight – Savor These Perfect Food Pairings”
- Robin at Crushed Grape Chronicles: “Sweet Bordeaux Wines and pairings from opposite sides of the globe”
- Pinny at Chinese Food & Wine Pairings: “Sweet Bordeaux Paired with Asian Carbs – Chinese Sticky Rice and Korean Japchae”
- Susannah at avvinare: “Delightful Sweet Wines from Bordeaux”
- Nicole at Somm’s Table: “Château Loupiac Gaudiet with Cinnamon Apple Crème Brûlée”
- Gwendolyn at wine predator: “Successful Pairings of Salty and Savory with Sweet Semi-Dry Bordeaux”
- Jennifer at Vino Travels (title coming soon)
- Linda at My Full Wine Glass: “Appetizers, entrées and yes, dessert please, with sweet Bordeaux”