The Bordeaux bottle is currently one of the world's most popular bottle shapes. As the name suggests, it originally comes from the celebrated winegrowing region in western France.
Shape of the Bordeaux bottle
Like the Burgundy bottle, the base of the Bordeaux bottle is slightly concave to prevent deposits (sediment) from escaping when pouring. Its rather tall shoulders and generally tapered body are what give it such a striking appearance, and it now comes with all types of finish. This means that any type of closure can in turn be used in Bordeaux bottles, surely contributing to the fact that this shape is streaking ahead in the popularity stakes.
Colours of Bordeaux bottles
As most storable wines are filled in Bordeaux bottles, this shape comes largely in dark, muted shades somewhere between dark brown and dark green. In the white wine segment, one is increasingly seeing Bordeaux bottles in dark hues as well. The well-known Steiermark (Styria) bottle, for example, also features the Bordeaux shape and has naturally become renowned in white as well, mainly thanks to the “Junker” young wine brand.
Given its aforementioned stability, the basic Bordeaux shape also forms the basis for current large bottle formats. Large bottles are particularly suitable for storing and ageing wines. The best-known models have borne rather Biblical names since time immemorial:
- Magnum: 1.5 l = 2 bottles
- Double magnum: 3.0 l = 4 bottles
- Jeroboam: 4.5 l = 6 bottles
- Imperial: 6.0 l = 8 bottles
- Salmanazar: 9.0 l = 12 bottles
- Balthazar: 12.0 l = 16 bottles
- Nebuchadnezzar: 15.0 l = 20 bottles
- Goliath: 18.0 l = 24 bottles