Cotes de Bourg is an appellation of the Bordeaux wine region, producing primarily red wine, but also a small quantity of white. The appellation covers wines made in the area around the town of Bourg, located 12 miles (20 km) north-west of Bordeaux city. Cotes de Bourg was originally intended to be part of the new Cotes de Bordeaux appellation created in 2009, but this did not go ahead.
The soil types of the Cotes de Bourg are a mixture of clay, sand and gravel in varying proportions; this is to be expected, given Bourg’s location near the confluence of the Dordogne and Garonne rivers. The Merlot grape dominates the vineyards here. It thrives in the areas with cooler, moist, clay-rich soils, while Cabernet Sauvignon does better in the gravel- and sand-dominant parts of the Cotes de Bourg.
Historically, the region has produced heavier red wines which lacked the finesse of those produced just across the water in Margaux. The modern wine market, however, is demanding softer, more fruit-driven wines, and the Merlot grape is well suited to these. The appellation’s wines are now more approachable, due to changes in winemaking techniques and philosophies. Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc are used to add complexity and structure to Cotes de Bourg wines, and Malbec is also sometimes employed. The wines are of a younger-drinking style, but will also age reasonably well for five to ten years.
Like Blaye, just to the north, Bourg produces wines that are of good quality, yet significantly less expensive than other Bordeaux wines.