Château de Cérons

Just to the north of Sauternes and Barsac, on the left bank of the Garonne, there lies a little village named Cérons. Today this town and its associated appellation, Cérons, is all but forgotten even by those who regularly turn to Bordeaux for their drinking. Sweet-toothed visitors pass the cool limestone walls and shuttered houses en route for Château Climens or Château d’Yquem, never stopping to think of the wines of Cérons, never pondering for a moment what used to be, or even why there is such a similarity between the name of Cérons the village, and Ciron the river, which locals would describe with conviction as the lifeblood of these sweet wine appellations. The two are, of course, intrinsically related.

Château de Cérons

Although today the Ciron flows into the Garonne between Preignac and Barsac, this was not always the case. During the 17th century the river meandered northwards, along the alluvial plain of gravel and sand that lay alongside the Garonne. Eventually the Ciron gave up its struggle for independence, draining into its larger companion at Cérons. The village was thus named for the river that once flowed straight through it, and there was even a small port built where the waters of the Garonne and the Ciron once joined.

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