The Cotes de Bordeaux is the youngest AOC in Bordeaux, established only in 2009 when four smaller communes were joined together to become a single region (with a bit more of marketing muscle than they had before). Cotes de Bordeaux wines aren’t very common here — though that’s changing, thanks in part to wineries like Chateau Magdeleine Bouhou, which is exporting on a limited basis to the U.S. for the first time this year.
I recently met with the chateau’s Yann Couturier over lunch in San Francisco to taste two of the wines that Bouhou is bringing into the states. Thoughts follow.
2014 Chateau Magdeleine Bouhou La Boha – This blend of 80% merlot, 10% cabernet sauvignon, and 10% cabernet franc is unaged in oak. It is held in concrete tanks only before bottling. Color my surprise at how incredibly drinkable Boha is, its heavy violet notes belying the merlot content while allowing freshly fruit-forward notes of cherry and red berries to rise to the surface. Very atypical of anything I’ve ever had from Bordeaux, it’s a perfect little “by the glass” offering (which is how it is commonly sold in France). B+ / $16
2012 Chateau Magdeleine Bouhou Grand Vin – This is Bouhou’s flagship wine, blended from 90% merlot and 10% malbec, and traditionally aged for a year or more in French oak barrels. Classically structured with more of a boldly tannic backbone, it still has ample fruit but is complemented by notes of pepper, grilled meat, and a tart finish. Worth a look. B+ / $24