Grand Cercle: des Vines de Bordeaux (aka: a wholebunchawine)

I had the opportunity to attend an amazing wine tasting event hosted at The Tower at Cityplace: “Grand Cercle, des Vins de Bordeaux: From Barrel to Bottle”. As you may have guessed, this event featured wines from the Bordeaux region–34 wineries from the Left and Right banks were represented, to be precise. If you would like to learn more about the Bordeaux Region in France, and the fabulous wines it produces, here are some fabulous quick hits to bring you up to speed.

What made this event particularly unique was the fact that the wines we tasted were being poured not by their distributors, but by the winemakers or vineyard owners themselves, who came from France to be at the tasting. (Ooh, la la!) It made for a special opportunity to hear about what I was tasting directly from the vintner. While I certainly enjoy wine, the enthusiasm and expertise some of my fellow attendees appeared to bring to the table made me feel like a middle school kid who’d snuck into a high school dance. That said, I was fascinated listening to some of the super-fancy-pants Dallasites in attendance (some of whom donned an amazing array of bow ties, paisley suits, straw hats, and the likes) as they chatted up the super-fancy-pants French wine gurus.


Yes, I may have been a fish out of water at this event, but I was such a happy fish. A warm, toasty, happy fish; nearly 150 varieties and vintages of wines were poured that evening, and I’m always oddly intimidated by the spittoon concept.  That said, it would be implausible for me to review more than a few of the wines I tasted (for several reasons…). While this event was definitely red-centric, I was pleased to see a handful of white Bordeauxs being poured throughout the evening. (After all, I’m a white girl…wait…I mean, I am a girl who enjoys white wines.) My favorite of the bunch may have been the 2011 Chateau Magrez Fombrauge Bordeaux Blanc, which was vibrant and lightly acidic, with hints of melon and citrus. It was perfectly drinkable. Maybe a little too drinkable. The 2010 Chateau Le Sartre Blanc was also lovely- medium bodied, with a juicy tropical citrus profile. That’s not to say I left this event without being blown away by an untold number of reds. Notably, I enjoyed the 2011 Chateau La Marzelle, which was rich yet soft and supple, with a hint of cherry and deep, peppery finish.

This event hosted a silent auction that took place throughout the evening, featuring a number of rare and hard to find bottles as well as limited releases. While I did not partake in the silent auction, I saw many guests enthusiastically scrawling down numbers that contained more digits than I personally have ever paid for a bottle of vino. What I did partake in was the tasty variety of hors de oeuvres that were made available throughout the evening, which were a vital component in maintaining the ability to walk in a straight line following this event.

This event gave me a new appreciation of wines from the Bordeaux region- excuse me, Vins de Bordeaux- and I’m pretty sure I’m like roughly 10-15% fancier now, having attended.