The pretty region of St Emilion has been producing wine for centuries, and the variety of terrain here means wine of great diversity is produced here.
There is a mix of soil types, from limestone hills leading down to sandy soils by the Dordogne river. It is said that the finer estates are the ones perched on the hilltops. The limestone soils allow the vines to drain well, but keep moist conditions during dry years. The minerality of the soil finds it's way into the vines and the resulting wine. The wine made in limestone areas tend to be richer than those produced in sandy soils.
Merlot is the dominant grape, and is blended with Cabernet Franc primarily, with additions of Cabernet Sauvignon, Malbec and Petit Verdot. Classic Merlot flavours such as black fruits, plums and liquorice. Cabernet Franc offers touches of spice, floral aromas and tannins.
The appellation borders the are where Pomerol is produced. Pomerol differs fro St Emilion in that the soils are more gravelly which means Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon can be grown to better effect.
This famous wine appellation was only formally classified in 1954 and was divided into two appellations: Premier Grand Cru Classe and Grand Cru Classe. Note that wines labelled Grand Cru are of a much lower quality. The appellation evaluates its producers positions within the subdivisions every 10 years, the last one being in 2012.
The estates in St Emilion tend to be smaller than those of Medoc and Graves, which means they can experiment with new techniques more easily. This, along with the soil diversity in the region, creates a huge range of styles of wine. So no matter what your taste in wine, you are sure to find something that suits in St Emilion.
More Bordeaux Insights...
- Travellers welcome to Bordeaux from June 15th 2020
- Happy New Year from Bordeaux!
- Merry Christmas from the team at SeeBordeaux.com
- Cat swimming lessons in Bordeaux
- Bordeaux in France's top 5 destinations 2019
- Elton John's Farewell Tour in Bordeaux 2019