1 La Dominique, 33330 Saint-Émilion, France
Opened in 2014, this gorgeous restaurant on top of the winery of Chateau La Dominique, near Bordeaux’s St. Emilion, is a must for lunch for travelers touring this part of the wine region. The dining room is located on a large terrace that sits on top of the chateau's winery, a blood-red-colored, contemporary building designed by Jean Nouvel. The Priztker Prize–wining architect's mirrored construction brilliantly plays with the colors, reflecting them back at diners: the blue of the sky; the deep green of the wine fields; the red of a field of pebbles that serves as an art installation in the middle of the terrace.
Luckily, the food at Rouge Terasse lives up to this stunning setting. It’s simply prepared southwestern cuisine, so charcuterie is presented on rough wooden boards with a pile of cornichons, and a roast chicken is served on a velvety pile of potatoes cooked in cream. Add to this an excellent wine list and the sweeping views that extend all the way up to modest-looking Pétrus winery, and you have a wonderful, very special lunch. Before or after, it’s well worth touring La Dominique winery, but it’s not required to score a reservation here. Terasse Rouge is open to anyone and has been wholeheartedly embraced by the neighbors so pay attention to your fellow diners: you may be sitting next to the winemakers of some of the region’s most acclaimed vintages.
Written by Simone Girner