An important white grape of Bordeaux, including the prized dessert wine, Sauternes. Wines can be surprisingly rich and when oaked, can taste similar to Chardonnay.

Primary Flavors

  • Lemon
  • Beeswax
  • Yellow Peach
  • Chamomile
  • Saline

Taste Profile


Medium Body

None Tannins

Medium Acidity

11.5–13.5% ABV


    45–55°F / 7-12°C



    5–10 Years

Food Pairing

Sémillon pairs excellent with richer fish entrées such as black cod and with white meats including chicken and pork chops. Try spicing with fresh fennel and dill.

Semillon wine in a glass with grapes

Fun Facts About Sémillon Wine

  1. Sémillon is France’s 4th most planted white wine variety behind Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay.
  2. Sémillon is commonly blended with Sauvignon Blanc and Muscadelle in White Bordeaux.
  3. There are about 45,000 acres of Sémillon planted worldwide.

What To Look for in Sémillon Wine

Hot-Climate Sémillon presents more ripe fruits, including mango, yellow peach and papaya. It’s not uncommon to find wines from these regions using moderate oak-aging to add buttery notes to the flavor.

Cool-Climate Sémillon winemakers pick Grapes when they’re less ripe, and the wines have a lot more acidity, often resembling their popular cousin, Sauvignon Blanc. Citrus flavors of lemon, lime zest, and grapefruit are accentuated in this style when winemakers don’t oak-age their Sémillon.

Semillon wine taste chart

How Much Should You Expect to Spend?

An average bottle of Sémillon will run about $45, although there are cheaper options around the $20 range and pricier options above $200. There are plenty of price points in either hot or cool-climate versions.

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About Madeline Puckette

James Beard Award-winning author and Wine Communicator of the Year. I co-founded Wine Folly to help people learn about wine. @WineFolly