Beyond Claret: 30 great alternatives to snap up
Winemakers the world over hold up the red wines of Bordeaux as the benchmark for quality and style. But where to start? Andy Howard MW recommends 30 great reds to try if you’re keen to discover the world beyond your default claret option…
Ask anyone, expert or not, to name a famous wine region, and I suspect the majority will say Bordeaux. For more than 850 years, since the time of Henry II and Eleanor of Aquitaine, this part of southwest France has been very closely linked with fine wines, and for a style known as ‘claret’. Although claret was markedly different from the Bordeaux wines of today, the two names have become inextricably linked. Claret described wines from the region which tended, as a result of the cool, maritime-influenced climate, to be relatively light in colour and flavour. In fact, for many years Bordeaux was improved after being ‘beefed-up’ with the addition of wines from areas such as Cahors and Gaillac.
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