In Pomerol, Fronsac, Saint-Emilion, the wines are almost exclusively merlot-based blends, which grow well in the clay soil that dominates the region. Plateaus of limestone and patches of sand scattered throughout the vineyards allow for modest growth of other grapes which lend structure and personality to the merlot with which they are blended. Unlike Left Bank wines, which are dominated by tannic cabernet sauvignon that's built to age and meant to sit for years in a cellar, these merlot-based wines are lower in tannins and acid, which gives them incredible versatility.
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Even the most casual enthusiasts recognize Bordeaux's significance as one of the world's premier wine regions: its storied Châteaux have become the stuff of legend. With top wines easily fetching thousands of dollars, it's understandable why the region has increasingly lost cachet among a younger generation of drinkers. But there's another side of Bordeaux that we've all be missing.