BOOKINGS: 020 8288 0314

Refreshingly fun tasting events
ThirtyFifty - Hens

Red Wines of Bordeaux with Abbie Bennington Part 4

This show was published 26 April 2024


We discuss the red wine making process and the principal black grape varieties used in Bordeaux blends which are Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot Cabernet Franc plus Petit Verdot.

Abbie talks us through the characteristics of each grape and their suitability for Bordeaux climate and soils, with thick skinned Cabernet Sauvignon, needed for its ageing potential, Cab Franc for its aromatic profile and good old Merlot with its 'blue' fruit aromas of blueberry and plum. Petit Verdot ripens later and is used to a lesser extent but is important nevertheless.

In the red winemaking process, grapes are sorted and de-stemmed before crushing and fermenting in stainless steel tanks. The skins float to the top of the tank, creating what is called a cap. To extract colour and tannins, the skins need to be kept in contact with the juice by punching down the cap into the juice. Another way is through a large hose from bottom of tank that pushes the fermenting juice up through the skins, and thirdly a rotating blade can be used to move the juice to ensure contact with the skins.

Wines that are being matured are aged in new or old oak barrels. New French oak will impart flavours such as vanilla, cloves, cedar, whereas old oak imparts less flavour. We touch on the toasting of the barrels which will vary according to the style of wine that individual winemakers are aiming to achieve.


Using XML subscription or through Apple Podcasts or Spotify or wherever you normally listen to podcasts.


The UK Wine Show is sponsored by ThirtyFifty. Our team of wine tasters are busy entertaining and educating UK consumers to help them get the most out of wine.

Support us on Patreon

If you are a regular listener, do consider supporting the UK Wine Show on Patreon. You can pledge a monthly payment, equivalent to a cup of coffee or very small glass of wine!

Become a Patron!


The music used for the UK Wine Show is Griffes de Jingle 1 by Marcel de la Jartèle and Silence by Etoile Noire.

xml subscription
Spotify RSS feed
itunes RSS feed
Stitcher RSS feed


A perfect gift
for wine loving
friends and

From £49
per person