The stats speak for themselves, as does Bordeaux’s history. With wine production dating back to Roman times, it’s the Grand Crus Classés—a classification pertaining to the area’s five finest wines, as mandated by Emperor Napoleon III in 1855—that truly put this viticultural region on the map. Today, Bordeaux is France’s largest wine-growing region, with 6,000 wineries and vineyards spread out across 57 appellations and approximately 280,000 rolling acres of vineyards.
As to the best wine within Bordeaux, the debate rages on. Left or right bank? Cabernet- or Merlot-based? The jury, as it were, remains out. But put an expert on the spot, one of those unabashed grape geeks to whom wine is a way of life, maybe even a religion, and you’ll certainly get a few personal favorites. That’s why we turned to our friend Damien Mottier, a Bordeaux-based guide for DuVine. Though a native of Normandy, Damien has spent the last seven years living and riding in Bordeaux. Along the way, he’s discovered some of his favorite wineries and restaurants, ten of which he was happy to share with us. Click through our gallery to find out what and where Damien likes to sip and savor within his adopted home.