(Say-mee-yoN) - White wine grape, native to Bordeaux and used there primarily in a blend with Sauvignon Blanc; increasingly seen as a varietal in the U.S. and Australia, where it makes a soft, medium-bodied, sometimes pleasantly musky white wine.
Semi-classic grape widely grown in the Bordeaux region of France and also elsewhere. This grape variety has a distinct fig-like character. In France, Australia and increasingly in California it is often blended with Sauvignon Blanc to cut some of the strong "gooseberry" flavor of the latter grape and create better balance. Wineries in many countries also use the grape to create dry single-varietal white wines. When infected by the "noble rot" fungi, (Botrytis cineria), it can be used to produce first-class sweet white wines such as those of the french Sauternes.
Semillon, which has traditionally been part of the dry Bordeaux white blends as well as the incredible sweet wines of Sauternes, produces a dry complex white wine in California. As in France, it is often blended with Sauvignon Blanc.
Classic white widely grown in Bordeaux and Australia, and some areas of California. Often blended with Sauvignon Blanc, but also used to make dry whites. When affected with the fungus Botrytis cinerea it produces sweet whites of exceptional quality such as those of Sauternes.
a white grape variety. Frequently used as a blending grape with Sauvignon Blanc, but capable of success on its own. Figures prominently in the wines of the Sauternes region of Bordeaux. Also produces excellent dry, full-boded whites in Australia.
This white varietal is little known in America with the exception of its success in Washington State, but is very famous for its contribution to the dry and sweet whites of Bordeaux. It is also a popular varietal in Australia, where its high acid provides for a life span of up to 30 years! The contrasting oily, fat, viscous center and waxy or nutty character makes this a very unusual wine. It is not for everyone. Dry white Bordeaux at the lower end have less semillon and little or no oak. At the higher end, they are more concentrated, complex, and more lavishly oaked. The most famous semillon based wine in the world is a sweet white Bordeaux, or Sauternes, the botrytis affected Chateau d'Yquem.