Though we frequently make threats, we don’t often get the chance to return to places we’ve visited. On this visit to Europe we lived up to our promises and revisited a couple of places that we’ve been to recently. We returned to Bordeaux and its surrounding wine country.
Worldwide, wine country has a magnetic appeal. And at times it seems our travels leap frog between the idyllic Lilly pads of famous viticulture regions. Perhaps it is the lure of the fine vino or maybe it’s the pleasant climate and romantic appeal that surrounds vineyards. Who knows? Whatever the reason we often find ourselves sipping the latest vintage not far from the very vines that produced the grapes.
And so it was that we returned to St. Emilion. Perhaps we would have motored by if it were an off year in Bordeaux. But it wasn’t. The enticement of the release of the latest fine vintages, 2009 and 2010, was too much to pass by. Thus we found ourselves based again in St. Emilion. And again we were making daytime excursions to the region’s famous wine estates.
Beautiful historic St. Emilion is small. If there weren’t such steep roughly cobbled streets it would be easy enough to walk across in just a few minutes. Given its size, we figured we’d seen all that the town on our first visit. We were wrong. It is surprising how much we had missed. This time we ascended the church tower, explored the cloister, and walked the roads between the clos, the curving rock walls that encircle vineyards, all things we hadn’t done on our first visit. Our return visit to St. Emilion reminded us that even without the wine this UNESCO-listed town is worthy of a dedicated trip.
This time did we see it all? Is there more to see? Is there a reason for us to return beyond the regions distinctive wines? Of course there is. But really, the wine itself is good enough reason to come back.