One of the region's most famous wine-producing châteaux is actually within the city limits: follow N250 southwest from central Bordeaux for 3 km (2 miles) to the district of Pessac, home to Haut-Brion, producer of the only non-Médoc wine to be ranked a premier cru (the most elite wine classification). It's claimed the very buildings surrounding the vineyards create their own microclimate, protecting the precious grapes and allowing them to ripen earlier. The white
château looks out over the celebrated pebbly soil. The wines produced at La Mission–Haut Brion (Domaine Clarence Dillon), across the road, are almost as sought-after.