Bordeaux, listed at the UNESCO world heritage, is the capital of the Aquitaine region, and the fifth largest city in France. You will enjoy its alive shopping streets, historic quarters, food markets, cafés, wine bars, intimate traditional and gourmet restaurants. The city gave its name to the vineyard and its legendary chateaux of Saint-Empire, Margaux, Pauillac, and more. Ideally located at the Gironde river estuary, about 30 miles (50 km) from the Atlantic coast, the city of Bordeaux was the largest port in France before the 1789 Revolution. The wine business and the triangular trade contributed to make merchants fortunate and to create a eighteenth century outstanding architectural heritage : private mansions, theaters and museums, tree-shaded thoroughfares and large avenues that invite to walks, beautifully designed river banks facing classified buildings such as Hotel de la Bourse, Grand Pavilion and fountains…
We have chosen Bordeaux as a starting point for our wines tours considering the location of the city at the center of the Medoc, Saint-Emilion, Sauternes and Graves prestigious vineyards. Your headquarters is a charming 4-keys guesthouse located downtown nearby Saint-Seurin basilica. It takes no more than ten minutes by walking to get to the Garonne banks, the public garden, the opera house, the alive Sainte-Catherine and Saint-Pierre quarters, famous for restaurants and shopping.
Mandel guesthouse is a privately-owned nineteenth-century renovated villa set on three levels. It offers 4 beautifully decorated rooms with en-suite bathrooms (bath or shower, hairdryer and bathrobes), all furnished with stylish antiques and king-size or two single beds. Modern amenities include coffee and tea facilities, TV with international cable chains, free WiFi access. The rooms are air-conditioned. Daily continental breakfasts are served in the family dining room or on the terrace facing a small garden with a pool. Please note that the owners have two cats.
Chef Myriam was born and raised in a family of chefs and naturally gained her passion for cooking by her grand-mother.
Your cooking class celebrates the local cuisine with simple recipes. This is a hands-on class taught in English. You will learn how to prepare and to cook a 3-course menu from scratch. Menu includes a starter, a main course and a dessert, all prepared with fresh seasonal produce from the market.
Sample menus can include oeuf en meurette (eggs baked in red wine sauce), foie gras creme brulee, rack of lamb in a crust of herbs, “Parmentier" duck confit, chicken supreme cooked in Sauternes wine, Grand Marnier souffle, strawberries in a spicy red wine sauce, etc.
Your cooking class is scheduled in the morning, starting at 10:45 am for about 2h30. Tasting lunch accompanied by wine follows. Recipes will be emailed after the class.
Bordeaux is the biggest region of wine growing in the world, made up of five main vineyards : Medoc, Saint-Emilion, Pomerol, Graves and Sauternes. Medoc and Saint-Emilion red wines are made with Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon often blended with Cabernet Franc.
The color trends to be a garnet/ruby shade. The flavor is typically a light one, with blackberry, black fruits, wood, and other notes. You will learn about the 1855 classification relied to Paris Universal Exhibition. Napoleon III asked a panel to break the region's wines down by price (therefore, hopefully, quality as well). The 1855 classification was never meant to be an official quality roster, however it's unchanged today.
Taste of Bordeaux program includes 2 expert-led tours to the Medoc (Saint Julien, Pauillac, Margaux…) and to Saint-Emilion, with 3 prestigious Chateaux “Grands Crus" visits followed by wine tastings.
Day 1: Bordeaux St-Jean train station transfer. Early afternoon check-in at the guesthouse. One-hour guided tour of Bordeaux in an open-air coach starting at 3:45pm (meeting point at the Visitors Bureau). Time free. Welcome food and wine pairing dinner at Mandel. Overnight at the villa.
Day 2: Continental Breakfast. Cooking class celebrating the south-west cuisine. Tasting 3-course lunch accompanied by a glass of wine. Transfer to Saint-Emilion through Pomerol by private minibus. Expert-led one-hour visit to a Grand Cru winery, followed by wine tasting starting at 3:00pm. Walking tour to Saint-Emilion medieval village listed at the Unesco. Transfer to Bordeaux at 5:30pm Relaxing time. 5-course dinner at restaurant Miles (wine is at extra cost) in Bordeaux. Overnight at the villa.
Day 3: Continental Breakfast. Transfer to the Medoc through Margaux by private minibus. Expert-led one-hour visit to a Grand Cru winery such as Chateau Lascombes or Pichon-Longueville, a Second Growth of Margaux or Pauillac. Traditional lunch at Le Savoie in Margaux or at Chez Mémé in Saint-Julien-Beychevelle (wine is at extra cost). Afternoon visit to Chateau Léoville-Poyferré, a Second Growth of Saint-Julien or similar. Transfer to Bordeaux at 5:30pm. Relaxing time. Dinner on your own. Overnight at the villa.
Day 4: Breakfast at the guesthouse. Check-out not later than 11:00am. Bordeaux St-Jean train station transfer. End of the tour.
US$ 2,090 per person (DBL occupancy)
US$ 320 single supplement
Bordeaux Saint-Jean train station round-trip transfer
Two expert-led wine tours by private van departing from Mandel B&B in Bordeaux
Entrance fees to the wineries, tastings included
3-night chic B&B accommodation
Daily continental breakfasts
Two gourmet dinner in a Bordeaux restaurant and in Mandel “table d'hotes"
One lunch in the Medoc
Hands-on cooking class followed by tasting lunch accompanied by wine
Recipes in English
Tour of Bordeaux by open-air coach
NOT INCLUDED: international airfare to/from your country, train tickets in France, drinks at restaurants, personal expenses and personal insurance, and all which is not mentioned in “price includes".
2018 tours are available upon request.
March 11-15, 2019
September 7-11, 2019
Tour is confirmed with 4 people, and it's limited to 6 participants. Considering the limited space in the tour and in the guest house, reservation in advance is recommended.