After years of difficulty, Bordeaux wines are back on the rise in the U.S. market, increasing 6 percent to 2.1 million cases in 2016, according to Shanken News Daily, and accessibly-priced offerings retailing from $10 to $20 a bottle are making inroads among younger consumers as an entryway to the prestigious French category. Among the appellations driving gains at Bordeaux's entry level is the Côtes de Bordeaux, whose U.S. sales have increased by nearly 60 percent over the past five years, to about 125,000 cases.
"The U.S. is a mature market, but consumers are looking for discovery wines, and that's how we're positioning Côtes de Bordeaux," says Patricia Zabalza, the appellation's director. "We think of it as 'Bordeaux in jeans.' Five years ago the U.S. comprised 4 percent of our exports; now it's at 10 percent. We expect to continue growing by about 10 percent in the U.S. market this year."
Formed in 2009, the Côtes de Bordeaux is made up of five subappellations: Blaye, Cadillac, Castillon, Francs and newcomer Ste.-Foy, which joined the group late last year. Red blends, largely based on Merlot, are predominant across each of the subappellations, although Blaye, Francs and Ste.-Foy also produce dry whites made from Bordeaux's classic Sauvignon Blanc and Sémillon varieties.
For more on how Bordeaux's small vignerons are increasing their exports to the U.S., check out the full story at ShankenNewsDaily.com.