O'Brien Estate
2019 Bordeaux Wine Cruise


Ports of Call

Bordeaux, France

Bordeaux is an elegant, UNESCO world-heritage city that has been recently redeveloped to the delight of all who visit.  The heart of the city is the Garonne River, the same waterway Dutch and English merchants sailed centuries ago with barrels of wine. Today, where once grungy warehouses lined the river, a park-like concourse now frames and showcases the city.

Each year, wine lovers from all over the world come to Bordeaux for one simple reason: to visit the 300,000 acres of vineyards that surround the city from every direction. And no matter which direction you go, there's a famous appellation—from the classic reds of the Médoc to the underappreciated whites of Graves and Entre-Deux-Mers; from the unparalleled dessert wines of Sauternes, to the rising reds of the Right Bank's Pomerol and Saint-Émilion. 


 
 

Cadillac, France
 
Cadillac is a commune in the Gironde department in Aquitaine in southwestern France. It lies directly across the Garonne river from Sauternes, which is known for producing sweet dessert wines under the Cadillac AOC designation. The name of the commune was adopted by Antoine Laumet de La Mothe, sieur de Cadillac, the founder of Detroit and Governor of Louisiana, on his arrival to what is now the United States. The Cadillac division of General Motors, and Cadillac, Michigan are named after him.
 
The gateway to the wine region of Sauternes which is known for its exceptional botrytized dessert wines. Sauternes is extremely risky and expensive to make, because harvest must take place quite late, when there is the danger of rain or frost. In some years, either because of the weather or the failure of botrytis to arrive at all, no Sauternes is made. Even in the best conditions, yields are low. Chateau D’Yquem, the region’s most famous estate, preserves its superlative reputation by limiting yields to as little as 9 hl/ha (wine per hectare of vineyard).


 

Blaye, France

Situated on the eastern side of the Gironde estuary north of Bordeaux, Blaye is best known for its Citadel and for the red wine produced in the surrounding region. With 4,700 inhabitants, Blaye is a small town, but has a long history of military and strategic significance.
 
According to legend Blaye is the final resting place of the Count Roland of Blaye, nephew of Charlemagne and hero of Le Chanson de Roland. Unfortunately, the Basilique Saint-Romain where he was said to be buried suffered damage in the Wars of Religion and was later completely destroyed during the building of the Citadel.

 

 Libourne (Saint-Emilion), France
Often missed due to beautiful Bordeaux to the west and Saint-Emilion to the south-east, the town of Libourne sits at the confluence of the Dordogne and Isle Rivers.  Libourne itself is a small administrative and commercial center; there is a port for ocean-going vessels, although traffic is limited, and the town is the center of a wine-producing district. Libourne takes its name from Roger de Leyburn, English seneschal of Gascony, who founded it as a bastide (fortified town) in 1270. 

 
But more importantly, this is the Right Bank of Bordeaux. Most famous for the wines made here and in the nearby region of Pomerol,  wine made here in Liournais is Merlot. Some of the most prized Merlot based wines are produced in the area around the town of Libourne. 
One of the the Libournais’ most celebrated areas, Saint-Émilion borders the Dordogne River about 80 miles east of the town of Bordeaux. The village of St-Émilion has remarkably remained nearly unchanged since the middle ages. 

HIGHLIGHTS

Wine Program Highlights
  • Cruise personally hosted by O'Brien Estate owners, Bart & Barb O'Brien
  • Wine Program featuring the wines of O'Brien Estate 
  • Onboard events including O'Brien welcome dinner, seminar & tasting, dinner with the winemaker and farewell toast
  • Exclusive optional Food & Wine Trails pre-cruise land program
  • Food & Wine Trails optional private-to-the-group wine-themed Bordeaux shore excursion  
  • $100 per person shipboard credit for early bookings 

 

Cruise Highlights

  • 7-night Bordeaux to Bordeaux cruise aboard Uniworld's newly upgraded S.S. Royale
  • Uniworld's All Inclusive Experience
  • Captain's Welcome and Farewell reception and dinner 
  • Visit to 3 UNESCO World Heritage sites
  • Médoc wine tasting
  • Guided World War II Bunker Archaeology tour
  • Wine-paired lunch at Château Royal de Cazeneuve
  • "Village Day" with farmers' market in Libourne
  • Free time to explore La Cité du Vin, Bordeaux wine and cultural museum

ABOUT the EXPERT(s)


Barb & Bart O'Brien
Owners and winemaker, O'Brien Estate

INCLUDES

  • Accommodations aboard Uniworld's S.S. Royale
  • Government taxes
  • All meals & entertainment on ship
  • Unlimited wine, beer, spirits, soft drinks, specialty coffee, tea and bottle water
  • All scheduled airport transfers on arrival / departure dates
  • Uniworld complimentary shore excursions
  • Complimentary Internet & WiFi
  • Complimentary use of bicycles & Nordic walking sticks onshore

DOESN'T INCLUDE

  • Roundtrip Air
  • Food & Wine Trails pre-cruise program 
  • Food & Wine Trails exclusive wine themed shore tour 
  • Premium wine and spirits
  • All items of a personal nature

REVIEWS

Bart and Barb were fabulous hosts and the wine was wonderful!

M. Gaffney (Los Altos, CA)

AWARDS and RATINGS




96 pts.
2012 Proprietary Red Blend 
Unrestrained Reserve

94 pts.
2012 Chardonnay Reserve