Within hours of landing in Bordeaux, we just had to get stuck into the wine culture. You can choose from a whole range of wine bars and bistros throughout the city but one really took our fancy – Le Bar a Vin.
Located just off the Place de la Comédie, which houses a famous theatre, Le Bar a Vin is situated in a building named ‘Ecole du Vin’ or ‘School of Wine’ in English. Enthusiasts of wine and its heritage can take workshops starting from €32 to learn all about the culture of wine and its production.
We sadly missed out on the classes but were just fortunate enough to make the last seatings at the bar. Having arrived without reservations it really was pot luck as to if we could get a table or not. Luckily the tables here do turn quite quickly and after a 20 minute wait we were in
The food offerings here are simple and delicious. Boards of ham, cheese, smoked duck and sausage are all available in various combinations. We opted for a plate of foie gras at €8.50. This arrived with various slices of different flavoured breads.
You would expect the wine list in a place like this to be intimidating, that isn’t the case at all. A small selection of carefully chosen wines are listed on the card. We decided to mix it up a bit and go for two cheaper glasses against two more expensive.
The white wines were chosen with the theory that they would compliment the foie gras. The cheapest wine – an AOC Bordeaux – Château Rauzan Despagne at just €2 per glass incredibly outshone it’s fellow counterpart AOC Pessac at €6.
An fruity, acidic and slightly dry white wine was a perfect foil for the richness that comes with a foie gras terrine. Along with the different breads such as the walnut and raisin, this was a perfect partner.
Our red wine choices were slightly disappointing. With the same system deployed we sampled a Bordeaux Château Saint Barbe Merlot at €2.50 per glass. Going up against that would be a glass of AOC Saint-Estephe Château Laffitte Carcasset at €6.
The reds just had too much tannin really which dries the mouth. I had expected better flavour coming from the Saint-Estephe but for us the real winner on the night was undoubtedly the AOC Bordeaux – Château Rauzan Despagne.
The setting for Le Bar a Vin is so relaxing. Even with closing time approaching, the staff were still serving with a smile and allowing everyone to unwind. Location-wise it couldn’t really be better placed. Directly in the centre of Bordeaux and a solid choice before a theatre show nearby.
Opening Times: Monday-Saturday 1100-2200 (last seating 2145)
Nearest Tram: Quinconces (Line B)