The red blends of Bordeaux, made mostly from Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Cabernet Franc, are some of the most coveted wines in the world.
Bottles from some of the best-known appellations, like Pomerol, Saint-Émilion, Margaux and Pauillac, promise quality pours with price tags to match. Fortunately, there is also excellent value to be found in wines of the region, provided you know where to look.
We created this list of 10 Bordeaux reds to suit all budgets, whether you want to make an investment or simply serve something nice with dinner tonight. Here are five top-scoring bottles for less than $25, and five others to splurge on and stash away.
$25 and Under
Château Macquin St Georges 2016 Saint-Georges-Saint-Émilion; $25, 92 points. This vineyard was one of the earliest in the region to be replanted after phylloxera destroyed the vines in the 19th century. It’s a large property at 77 acres, producing this richly dense wine that still keeps a sense of elegant proportion. Spice, black currant and acidity all give their characters to this wine that should be aged. Drink from 2023. Fruit of the Vines, Inc. Editors’ Choice. –Roger Voss
Château Tessendey 2016 Fronsac; $20, 92 points. Owned by a family long associated with Fronsac and Saint-Émilion, this wine is ripe, sumptuously textured while still developing. Generous, bold tannins match well with the black fruits. Drink the wine from 2021. Frederick Wildman & Sons, Ltd. Editors’ Choice. –R.V.
Château Jalousie Beaulieu 2016 Château Pascaud (Bordeaux Supérieur); $15, 91 points. This wine is bold and ripe. Black fruits, plenty of acidity and a core that is still developing all promise a fine wine. It needs more time and should be ready from 2022. Skurnik Wines, Inc. Best Buy. –R.V.
Château La Grange Clinet 2016 Réserve (Côtes de Bordeaux); $15, 91 points. A good proportion of the two Cabernets gives structure to contrast with the generous Merlot in this wine. A touch of mint melds with the ripe blackberry flavor to produce a well-balanced wine with great potential. Drink from 2021. Luneau USA Inc. Best Buy. –R.V.
Château de Parenchère 2017 Bordeaux Supérieur; $17, 90 points. This ripe wine offers plenty of black-currant fruits and juicy acidity. Its structure is already integrated with the fruitiness, giving a balanced wine that has a good future as it matures. Drink from 2021. Craft+Estate–Winebow. Editors’ Choice. –R.V.
Château Pétrus 2015 Pomerol; $3,400, 100 points. This is like drinking liquid black currants and blackberries. The wine has great intensity and richness from the superbly generous Merlot. The wood aging shows as a hint in the background, with the bold black fruit and ample acidity dominating. Drink from 2026. Cellar Selection. –R.V.
Château Lafite Rothschild 2016 Pauillac; $869, 99 points. Almost entirely Cabernet Sauvignon, this wine beautifully sums up the density and the richness of this variety in Pauillac. It is impressive, made even more so in this vintage by the ripeness of the tannins, the beautiful, plush fruit and enormous promise. Drink this wine from 2026. Its aging potential is enormous. Taub Family Selection. Cellar Selection. –R.V.
Château Smith Haut Lafitte 2016 Pessac-Léognan; $130, 97 points. This hugely dense wine is complex and full of juicy, succulent, smoky Cabernet Sauvignon. The tannins are at the service of the fruits. The wine still has a long way to go before maturity. Don’t think about drinking it before 2025. Cellar Selection. –R.V.
Vieux Château Mazerat 2017 Saint-Émilion; $175, 96 points. This wine is bold in structure and rich in feel, yet all that power is well balanced and honed. A concentrated blackberry character is propped up by firm tannins and lasting acidity, which gives ample aging potential. It’s a well-balanced wine and should be enjoyed from 2024. World’s End LLC. –R.V
Château Margaux 2017 Margaux; $500, 96 points. Aromas of wood and fresh fruit translate to the palate, giving this wine depth and concentration. It is powerful but also balanced and fresh, displaying the elegance of the vintage. While never overpowering, the wine’s structure will allow it to age well. Drink from 2024. –R.V