Wine Word of the Week: Right bank

By Kori ~ August 23rd, 2011.

This week’s Wine Word of the Week is right bank.

Official definition from Jancis Robinson’s The Oxford Companion to Wine:
Right bank is an expression much used of that part of the Bordeaux wine region that is on the right bank, or north, of the river Dordogne. It includes, travelling down river, Cotes de Castillon, Cotes de Francs, St-Emilion and its satellite appellations, Pomerol and Lalande-de-Pomerol, Fronsac and Canon-Fronsac, Bourg, and Blaye. The most obvious characteristic shared by these appellations, and distinct from left bank appellations, is that the dominant grape varieties are Merlot and Cabernet Franc rather than Cabernet Sauvignon. In recent years, much has been made of the rivalry between the established large estates of the left bank and the much smaller properties of the right bank (including many microchateaux) with their more recent reputations.

Layman’s terms from Kori:
Right bank refers to the part of the Bordeaux region of France on the “right bank” or north side of the Dordogne River and Gironde estuary. Oftentimes, right bank wines are either Merlot-based or Cabernet Franc-based blends.

Filed under: French Wine, Wine Word of the Week

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