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Bordeaux is a huge region producing red wines at every level, but is obviously
renowned for its classed growths. Broadly speaking it can be divided into the left
bank (the familiar communes of Pauillac, Saint-Julien, Saint Estephe and Margaux as
well as Graves and the various other Medoc appellations) and the right bank
vineyards that lie above the Dordogne river namely Saint-Emilion and its various
satellites and Pomerol plus a host of other appellations. Cabernet Sauvignon
dominates the left bank appellations whereas Merlot is favoured on the right bank.
Thus the wines are often stylistically quite different, as different terroirs suit
different grapes. Vintages are important but not always a reliable guide.