Bordeaux Saint-Emilion and around

Bordeaux Wine - Saint-Emilion & around

For this new weekly offer, Your Sommelier is taking you on a tour around the beautiful city of Saint-Emilion and its "Satellites". Saint-Emilion is a tiny, typical, hilly village on the right Bank of the Dordogne river. Its history goes back to the 8th century and the village was registered as a Unesco World Heritage site in 1999. Obviously, the city is famous for its wines rather than its medieval history but remains one of the most visited wine region in the world!

Saint-Emilion's reputations is largely due to the large diversity of its soils - limestone, clay, gravel and sand - as well a the microclimate that perfectly suits winegrowing. Combined with centuries of winemaking experience, this is the most perfect place for Merlot - the main grape in the area. Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon are also widely planted as most Saint-Emilion wines are subtle blends of these classic Bordeaux grapes.

Located around Saint-Emilion, "Satellites" are small villages like Puisseguin, Montagne or Lussac and given they don't have quite the same glorious reputation, they often represent excellent value for money. While Saint-Emilion prices have strongly inflated over the past few years, some family estates from satellite villages have started a smooth revival of these appellations, by improving the quality of the wines but keeping prices reasonable. We have selected a few of those under-the-radar wines that we think are among the best from each appellation!

£ 11.40

Montagne Saint-Emilion is the largest Satellite with over 200 growers, producing structured and round red wines. The terroir is the same as in Saint-Emilion - they are only separated by a small river - and wines are therefore quite similar. Château La Croix des Ducs has been in the same family since the 1970's, the vineyard and winemaking techniques were...

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£ 12.80

Château Austerlitz is a very typical wine from Saint-Emilion, made from a majority of Merlot and offering flavours of red fruit and spices. Its surroundings of classified growth estates ensures a great terroir, hence a good quality for a very accessible price. An easy-going wine made to drink young, perfect for any friend showing up unexpectedly!

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£ 13.95

Saint-Georges-Saint-Emilion is one of the smallest appellations in Bordeaux - less than 20 estates - and one of the oldest wine areas in France. As a result these wines are pretty confidential! The vineyards enjoy significant elevation and slopes, a very nice environment for quality wines. Château Macquin was a great discovery to us - and probably the...

£ 15.40

Château La Diligente is one of the best catch in Puisseguin St-Emilion. This satellite appellation clearly suffers from a lack of recognition compared to its prestigious neighbour, but there are small gems out there if you know where to look. Property of a former marine officer - hence the sloop on the label - and advised by star wine adviser Stéphane...

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£ 18.60

Château La Croix Bonnelle is a small estate of only 4 hectares situated on the west side of the first valley of Saint-Emilion. Clayey-chalky soils give a very characteristic supple wine, rich in tannins with a lot of fruit, a deep brilliant colour and an aromatic bouquet. A superb example of Saint-Emilion Grand Cru, top notch quality and highly...

£ 29.90

Going up in the range, let's now switch to the "Saint-Emilion Grand Cru Classé" and the 2011 vintage - perfect to drink now. Fonroque is an all-time classic, the estate where the Moueix family started it all - they now own Château Petrus and over 10 other estates in Bordeaux. The family has always been dedicated to Château Fonroque and invested a lot into...

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£ 33.00

Second wine of Château La Gaffelière, owned by Count Léo de Malet Roquefort - from the most ancient family in the region! Subsequent generations never refrained from investing heavily on the property in order to maintain its worldwide reputation, mixing modern and ancient techniques. Clos la Gaffelière is the second wine of the Château, made with the...

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£ 36.00

Château Croque Michotte is another Grand Cru that has always been especially praised by knowledgeable wine lovers among the world. Close to top Saint-Emilion vineyards (Cheval Blanc, La Dominique), it has a wonderful terroir with the most perfect soils. Wine quality has always been outstanding in this organic estate. This 2011 is brillant, offering...

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