Bordeaux needs no introduction; it is the hub of the renowned wine-growing region and is a port city on the Garonne River in southwestern France. This prestigious region has diversity, quality and quantity when it comes to growing grapes and producing wine. Almost 90% of production volume are the dry, medium and full-bodied red Bordeaux blends that secured its reputation. Both red and white Bordeaux wines are almost always blended. The grape varieties that are permissible in red Bordeaux blends are: Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Malbec and Petit Verdot.
While wine making styles vary, a general rule of thumb is that the Left Bank is predominantly Cabernet Sauvignon based with the Right Bank being more Merlot based. The Graves area produces both red wine (from the grapes previously mentioned) and white wine from the Sauvignon Blanc, Sémillon and Muscadelle grapes. The area of Sauternes (including Barsac) is known for its botrytized dessert wines.