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Bordeaux - More than a Wine

By Shari Hearn

Mention Bordeaux to most people and a smile will form on

their faces. "Ah, yes, they"ll say, "I just love a good Bordeaux.

Why, I remember this lovely 1985 Margaux"

And, yes, while Bordeaux produces great wines (especially a

1985 Margaux), what most people are ignoring is the city of

Bordeaux itself. While most people focus on the Bordeaux wine

region, the city of Bordeaux has many sights that make a stay

there an exciting one. First, there's the look of the city.

You'll find Roman, Gothic and Renaissance architecture represented

throughout this fine, historic city. The many 18th century mansions

and Gothic cathedrals are well worth the visit, as is the ruined

amphitheatre, Palais Gallien, where many a Gladiator met his fate.

While in Bordeaux one can't help but notice the many museums

throughout the city, museums famous for their prestigious collections.

And, no wonder, Bordeaux has inspired many great artists and

painters through history. For a glimpse into the history of Bordeaux,

be sure to stop at the Mus"e d'Aquitaine, where you'll be treated to

25,000 years of local history.

After a day of museums, if you still feel like walking, be sure to

take a stroll through the Jardin Public's manicured English Garden.

But, if you're too tired from all the sightseeing, you might want to

sit and enjoy a cruise along the River Garonne.

It's now late in the day, heading into night. Time for a little food and wine. What, you thought I was going to ignore food and wine? This is Bordeaux, the most important wine producing region of France!

The primary grapes grown in Bordeaux are Merlot, Cabernet-Sauvignon,

Cabernet-Franc, Semillon and Sauvignon.

There are 57 appellations in Bordeaux; some of the finest are Pauillac, Saint Emilion, Margaux and Saint Julien, so if you purchase a bottle of Bordeaux from any of these regions you know you're getting a good wine. Now that you've chosen your wine, it's time to pair it with traditional French dishes: Red Bordeaux would go great with boeuf bourguignon, grilled veal or lamb. Be sure to include some French cheeses with your red Bordeaux, like camembert, brie and Roquefort. White Bordeaux goes great with such French dishes as coq au vin, roast chicken provencal, and almond trout. And that, my friends, is Bordeaux. History, culture and great wine and food.

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