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Feb 19, 2011 07:12 AM

Need recommendation for 2 nights in St. Emilion in May

My husband and I will be traveling from a week on the coast in San Sebastian in mid-May on our way to Paris.. We are considering a 2 night stopover in St. Emilion. We are not looking for haute cuisine but prefer bistrot type food, typical to the area, to pair with their lovely wines. We have never visited the Bordeaux area, but we were advised to stay over in St. Emilion. Any suggestions?

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  1. There's a cool little place called Bar Amelia that we like. They serve traditional regional food at very good prices. Make sure to try the macarons in town-they are wonderful. My favorites are from the little shop on the right as you walk dow the steep hill-I wish I could think of the name. Two days might be a little long for St. Emilion-it is tres petite! Also, on the outside of town, where you park there are some stone tables that overlook the rooftops where we've had some amazing picnics. Have a wonderful time!

    1. On the way between San Sé and Paris, there is a wonderful b&b ferme-auberge, oops not in St Emilion, but at Cognac: Château du Veron in the nice little village of Mérac right outside Cognac.
      The setting is beautiful for such a reasonably priced place. The 26-euro lunch was a steal. The owner is a cognac grower and organizes tastings of his cognacs.

      6 Replies
      1. re: Parigi

        Sounds perfect except we will not have a car. We had planned on taking the train to Libourne, taxi to St. Emilion town center. Hoped we could access decent dining in the old town area by walking to and from dinner and spend some time tasting the Bordeaux wines. Would it be better to do so in the city of Bordeaux?

        1. re: saraWM

          Sigh. Could all fellow hounds please specify please in their OP whether they have a car or rely on public transport please. Would greatly help us help them.

          1. re: Parigi

            My apologies for my failure to mention the train. I had mentioned it in another post on a different site, so it was an oversight with Chowhound. We live in the land of the car so enjoy the opportunity to travel by train in Spain and France. Sometimes it is more limiting in our accommodation options, but the chance to travel the country where my husband has the chance to see the sights is worth the compromise. I will be more specific next time.

          2. re: saraWM

            Maybe consider renting a car for the Spain-Bordeaux leg of your trip? It is a beautiful drive in May with so many options for stopovers, spur of the moment degustations and exploration. If not, Libourne itself has its own charm and history!

            1. re: sarment

              Crossing borders to return a rental car can cost a fortune of a drop-off fee. It would be better to pick up a car just over the border in France, if OP could find public transportation from San Sebastian to, say, Biarritz or Bayonne.

              1. re: boredough

                You could travel on train from Spain to Bayonne or points north, pick up a car at whatever SNCF station, return the car at the same station or one further along your route, whatever suits your plans.

                SNCF has a relationship with Avis that allows you to arrive at a station, pick up a car and return it to the same or a different station. This is convenient when you may arrive late at the station (when car rentals are closed) or are returning the car on off hours (when car rentals are closed). All you do is waltz in and either ask for your keys or return them to the ticket agent. This may cost a few euros more than the cheapest car rentals, but the luxury of station pick up and return is, for us, invaluable.