Food & Drink

6 brilliant Bordeaux from the red wine capital of the world

At less than £20, budget Bordeaux has never tasted so good, says Sam Wylie-Harris.

These reds from the renowned French wine region are all at accessible prices
Women in French vineyard toasting with red wine These reds from the renowned French wine region are all at accessible prices (Nonglak Bunkoet/Legrand / Alamy /Alamy Stock Photo)

With its reputation for some of the finest red wines in the world, sometimes it’s easy to be duped into thinking those lovely labels with illustrious châteaux are out of reach.

But it just so happens that ‘modern Bordeaux’ is far more accessible. Upfront and fruit-forward thanks to warmer summers in the vineyard, with swathes of succulent fruits, smooth tannins and a more intense style of wine compared to old-school Bordeaux.

(Keith Erskine / Alamy Stock Phot/Alamy Stock Photo)

Best of all, there’s some wow factor at entry-level price points with consistent quality in recent vintages – and wines which can be enjoyed in their youth.

Here are some highlights to drink now…

1. Pierre Jaurant Bordeaux 2020, France, £5.29, Aldi, in-store

Aldi Pierre Jaurant Bordeaux 2020, France, Aldi,

A superb example of a best-value Bordeaux with delicious depth to the blackcurrant, cherry and plummy dark fruits; seductive oak-spiced nose alongside deep florals, touches of redcurrant and smooth, long finish. An instant crowd-pleaser.

2. M&S Château Bel-Air Bordeaux 2022, France, £10, Ocado

M&S Chateau Bel Air Bordeaux 2022, France, Marks & Spencer

Fabulously fruity and expressive with good structure; sumptuous red and black fruits interplay with hints of blueberry, cassis, dark chocolate and sweet, peppery spice, underpinned by supple tannins, with a long and lingering finish. Just gorgeous.

3. Cap Royal Bordeaux Supérieur 2020, France, £11, Tesco

Cap Royal Bordeaux Supérieur 2020, France, Tesco

Another superb style offering great value from this famed appellation, it’s vibrant with a beautiful bouquet of scented florals; the palate is deep with abundant red fruit flavours that meld seamlessly with touches of vanilla toast, velvety smooth tannins and a persistent, long finish. Outstanding value.

4. Comte De Saint Emmanuel 2021, Bordeaux, France, £12, Morrisons

Comte De Saint Emmanuel 2021, Bordeaux, France, Morrisons

Immediately enjoyable with its welcoming, spiced, brambly nose, complemented by hints of vanilla and coffee; bags of plush, blackberry fruit unfold with a touch of cedarwood, hints of plums and more savoury spice on the velvety smooth finish. Seriously good.

5. Château Moulin la Bergère 2019, St Georges Saint-Émilion, Bordeaux, France, £14.99, Waitrose

Chateau Moulin la Bergere 2019, St Georges Saint-Emilion, Bordeaux, France, Waitrose

A wine to swoon over with a real sense of strength, beguiling aromas of opulent berry fruits mingle with hints of clove and dried flowers. Smooth, rich and resplendent, tiers of plump, fresh, blackberry fruits with generous cassis flood the palate and glide along beautifully, with gentle spiced notes lending interest on the super-smooth finish. A glorious glass.

6. Château Tour Bayard 2020, Montagne-Saint-Émilion, Bordeaux, France, £17.99 (£13.99 Mix Six), Majestic

Chateau Tour Bayard 2020, Montagne-Saint-Emilion, Bordeaux, France, Majestic

Devastatingly delicious, this is a blockbuster red which over-delivers for the price at less than £20. Sensational florals bewitch and delight with the promise of what’s to come. Think ribbons of blackcurrant, raspberry, cherries and sweet spice, similar flavours integrate on the polished palate with a touch of liquorice framing the ripe cherry and dark berry fruits. Class in a glass.