Superb medieval city declared protected site, Saint Emilion and its surrounding vineyards enjoy a reputation that goes back several centuries. It is one of the oldest appellations of Bordeaux and the largest of all France, with its 1000 castles spread over 5000 ha of vines. It is on a clay-limestone soil that most of the first Grands Crus Classés, such as Château Ausone, are harvested. While others like the Château Cheval-Blanc come to the land of Graves north-west of the town, on the borders of Pomerol.
The Merlot grape variety dominates in Saint-Emilion, sometimes in the company of Cabernet-Franc, which gives the wine the tannic structure that the soil does not provide. The wines are both full of sap and of distinction, the Saint-Émilion harmonize wonderfully when they are young with red meats in sauce, with game when they flourish and with a poultry delicately prepared when they are old and very relaxed. They also go well with some mild cheeses and people from the region are happy to taste their wine with Dutch cheese