A UNESCO heritage site, St Emilion is a medieval town that gets tens of thousands of visitors a year. The vines that surround the town are dominated by Merlot accounting for 70% of the plantings, followed by Cabernet Franc at 25% and Cabernet Sauvignon at 5%. The surrounding areas host an array of different soil compositions. On the plateau of St Emilion the soil is a mixture of clay and loam over limestone, favouring Merlot and the Merlot dominated Ch. Angelus. The more westerly parts of the plateau have a higher proportion of gravel, this suits Cabernet Franc and this is reflected in the properties of Ch. Cheval Blanc & Ch. Figeac. When made well and not over extracted as has been the trend for some properties recently – the wines of St Emilion combine luscious Merlot fruit and beautiful freshness. The aforementioned Ch. Cheval Blanc and Ch. Angelus lead the way with Ch. Pavie and Ch. Ausone rounding out the Premier Grand Cru Classe A properties. Other properties such as Ch. Canon and Ch. Beausejour-Becot have hit a strong run of form in recent years.