Bordeaux Wine Tour

French Art of Living and traditions

Bordeaux wine comes from around Bordeaux region in the South West of France and this wine growing region covers 117,500 acres and is ranked as the third wine producing department of France. The red wines are based on the grape varieties of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Malbec, Cabernet Franc and Petit-Verdot, whereas the white wines use three main varieties of grapes : Sauvignon, Sémillon and Muscadelle.

There are six main wine growing regions in Bordeaux : (1) Bordeaux and Bordeaux Superior, (2) Graves, (3) Sauternes, (4) Médoc from Haut-Médoc, Margaux, Listrac, Moulis, Saint Julien, Paulliac to Saint-Estèphe, (5) Libournais which comprises the Saint Emilion, Pomerol, Lalande de Pomerol, Côte de Castillon and Francs (6) L’Entre-deux-Mer - the region between the rivers of Dordogne and Garonne within the department of Gironde.

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Day 1 – Thursday 11th July 2013 : Bordeaux  -  City of wine, art, culture and gastronomy

Pick up from the airport at Bordeaux and transfer by private car to your hotel to drop of your bags and continue on to Bordeaux city.  Bordeaux is a city designated as a UNESCO World Heritage site. Lunch will be at a typical French brasserie located on the ‘Place de la Comedie’, ‘Brasserie l’Europe which has been decorated by Jacque Garcia in the style of the grand brasseries of the early 19th century (la belle époque).

After lunch (15h00), your personal guide will pick you up from outside the restaurant for a guided tour on foot during two hours of the captivating city of Bordeaux to see the neoclassical Opera house on the Place de la Comédie, the lovely horse shoe square of the Place de la Bourse with its reflection in the water, the Parliament Square, the 15th century stone gateway (Porte Cailhau), the quarter of Pey Berland with its Tower and St André Cathedral, passing by the Rohan Palace (City hall today) surrounded by the many art museums of Bordeaux.

You have an hours free time to wander around Bordeaux on your own or shopping for luxury brands or along the pedestrian shopping street of Rue Saint Catherine. We recommend that you stop at ‘Bailladran’, a pastry shop famous for a Bordeaux speciality called the ‘Canelé’.

Your private car will pick you up at 18h at a pre-defined meeting point to take you back to your hotel. On arrival, check in to your hotel ***** – “Les Sources des Caudalie, in the heart of the Château de Haut Smith Lafitte vineyards. (First growth wine from Graves). The hotel is well known for its wine based SPA treatments.

Dinner this evening will be at the lovely bistrot of the hotel - ‘La table du Lavoir’.


Day 2 – Friday 12th July 2013: Visit the famous wines of Médoc

This morning, leave at 9.30am for the “‘Route des Châteaux” which passes by the famous wine villages of Margaux, Saint Julien, Paulliac and Saint Estèphe.

There will be a first stop at a wine estate in the Margaux appellation to visit and savor the wines of this estate. This will be at the third growth vineyard of Château Kirwan where during an hour you will enjoy a private prestige visit of the house in English where they will tell you the history of the house and how they carry out the vinification and ageing which goes to forge the character and uniqueness of their wines. This will be followed by a degustation of two of their wines – Château Kirwan and Charme de Kirwan with a Bordeaux delicacy called the cannelés.

Continue on along the scenic D2, your private guide will narrate the history of Medoc and its architecture, stopping you at many famous castles along the way such as Château Margaux, Château Palmer, passing by Saint Julien with its renowned wine estates such as Château Beychevelle (St Julien), Ducru-Beaucaillou (St Julien), Branaire Ducru (St Julien) to name a few, until you arrive at the capital of Médoc - Pauillac.

Lunch will be at the Café Lavinal in Bage (Pauillac) around 12h30. After lunch some free time to wander around this pretty port town.

Then hop into your private car for a short drive to either the second growth vineyard – Château Cos d’Estournel (St Estèphe) or a first growth vineyard of Château Latour (Pauillac) or any other available for a private guided visit at 14h30, where they will take you on a private visit of their famous estate.

You will then continue further along the ‘Route des Châteaux’ passing by the famous vineyards of Mouton Rothschild (Pauillac), Château Lafite Rothschild (Pauillac) and the 19th century Indian Pagoda edifice created by the founder of the Château Cos-d’Estournel (St Estèphe), until you arrive in the town of Saint Estèphe where you will stop to visit the Roman church with its baroque interiors which is located in the centre of the vineyards.

Return to your hotel for approximately 17h30. This evening we recommend that take a taxi to Bordeaux for dinner at either ‘Le Chapon Fin’ (Michelin 2*) or Le Pressoir d’Argent (Michelin 1*) or the restaurant Jean-Marie Amat at Lormont nearby Bordeaux.


Day 3 – Saturday 13th July 2013 : Saint Emilion

After breakfast at 9:30am, set off to discover the beautiful medieval village of Saint Emilion and its world renowned wines. Walk off breakfast with a one and a half hour private guided visit of this picturesque town which is also a UNESCO world heritage site. The history of St Emilion will be narrated to you while visiting the underground caves of the Saint Emilion monk, the catacombs, the paintings of the Trinity chapel and the unique Monolithic church.  

Your guide will drop you off for lunch at the gastronomy restaurant ‘ Le Tertre’ in the village of Saint Emilion just after noon.

After lunch time free to stroll along the ancient cobblestone streets of this the charming quaint village soaking up its ambiance or for shopping.

At 13h50 leave Saint Emilion on a very short drive to your next stop - Château Haut-Sarpe, a Saint Emilion Great Glassified Growth vineyard where you will be able to create your own wine personalised to your tastes. During the first hour you will have a guided tour of the vineyards and learn the process of wine making together with the history of the chateau and its owners. This will be followed by a wine tasting session where you will taste different wines from another property of the same owners called Château Le Castelot with an explanation on the art of tasting and assembling wines and finally you will be ready to assemble your own wine, cork it and label it with your personalised label. You leave with the bottle of wine you created.  

Return to the ‘Sources de Caudalie’ to enjoy a relaxing swim or wine based spa treatment before your dinner this evening. This evening dinner will be an innovative experience with creative cuisine from Nicolas Masse the chef at the Michelin 1* restaurant of your hotel – La Grand’Vigne.
 

Day 4 – Sunday 14th July 2013: Au revoir Bordeaux.

Take it easy this morning and have a late breakfast. You may choose to enjoy a last wine based spa treatment before leaving or just relax by the pool. Optional: Wine based spa treatments include red wine bath – 65€, Crushed cabernet or Merlot friction scrub – 85€, wine massage for 50mins – 105€.
 
Check out for 12 noon and transfer by private car in accordance with your flight departure times to Bordeaux Merignac international airport to catch your flight back to New York.

Price per person sharing a double room in the 5* Hotel – Les Sources de Caudalie
Base 2 participants – Comfort room (25sqm) :                    3800 $
Base 2 participants – Prestige room (30sqm) :                    3500 $
Optional: Travel Insurance - Medical expenses, Baggage, Repatriation :        

Price Includes :

Transfer from Airport in Bordeaux to Hotel Sources des Caudalie ***** on arrival day with further transfer to Bordeaux city after baggage drop-off
Guided tour of Bordeaux city with personal licensed guide on foot for 2 hours
Transfer from Bordeaux city back to the Hotel Sources des Caudalie in the heart of the vineyards
3 nights Hotel accommodation in Les Sources des Claudalie ***** (or similar category) based on shared Comfort or Prestige double room with buffet breakfast
Full day (8 hours) guided tour of Medoc with personal licensed guide and private chauffeur driven car
Guided tour of Saint Emilion for 1.5 hours on foot with a personal licensed guide
Full day (8 hours) private chauffeur driven car for Saint Emilion day trip
All entrance fees to the 3 vineyards (2 in Medoc, 1 in Saint Emilion) for the visits and wine tastings (degustations) mentioned in the program.
All English speaking professional guides on narrated tours mentioned in Bordeaux, Saint Emilion and full day for the Médoc tour
Transfer from Hotel to Sources des Caudalie ***** to Bordeaux international airport on departure date


Price Excludes :

International flights to and from Paris
Airport tax
Single room supplement
All lunches and dinners recommended in the program are at the clients own cost
All drinks except the wine tastings mentioned in the itinerary
All wine based spa treatments at clients own cost
Travel insurance