Last post on Saint-Émilion! Promise!
While Sheena and I were in Saint-Émilion, we decided to go on a wine tour as we were in one of the best wine regions of France. We already had a taste of Saint-Émilion red wine at lunch and decided to book a late afternoon tour at Château Cardinal Villemaurine.
This little family wine estate was a short walk from our guest-house and they had tours in English. November is off-season so the train and the bike tours through the wineries were not running but we didn’t have a lot of time so just going to one estate was perfect for us.
It was a great 1 hour tour and only cost us 8 euros each including tasting the wine. The guide told us that we came at a good time as we had a private tour and that in summer there are up to 50 people for each tour and tasting. The guide was about our age and had lived in Australia to learn English and he had amazing knowledge about the wine.
He took the time to explain each step in the process of wine making and how every wine has a unique flavour due to the difference in soil where the grapes were grown. I really understood why they say that the older the wine, the better it tastes.
An interesting fact is that the bottles are stored in the underground cellars without any labels on them. When the wine is ordered, the original label is added to the bottle to keep the authentic label design of its year. The type of barrels used also effect the flavour of the wine significantly.
Overall, it was an amazing insight into how wine is made. We tasted a few different wines and I bought a 2011 Saint-Émilion Grand Cru which I plan to share with friends on my last night in France.