East of Libourne
By Jane Anson
This Guide was last updated on 14 May 2010
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The second largest town in the region after Bordeaux. Created by Henry III of England in the 13th century, this once fortified town is on the banks of the Dordogne River, and in the 18th century was an important trading centre for the wines of Pomerol, Saint Emilion and Entre-Deux-Mers. Don’t be put off by the unattractive outskirts, as remnants of the fortified town can be found in the arcades that surround the handsome central square. Although the once busy port is now pretty much free of non-pleasure craft, it makes for a lovely summer stroll. The centre of town hosts a bustling outdoor market three days a week, and an excellent covered market every morning except Mondays.
Hardly a town at all, a better bet is the village of Catusseau, located just beside Pomerol (look for signs to Château La Croix). Here you’ll find the bakery, post office and a few other small shops – although the restaurant and wine shop have recently closed down. This has to be a great business opportunity …
Small, slightly shabby, but perfectly formed, the landscape around Fronsac is among the most beautiful in Bordeaux, with steep hills and sweeping views over the Dordogne River and back over Libourne, which lies just over 2km away. Its wines also predate those of Saint Emilion and Pomerol, having been sold in England as far back as the 13th century.
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