"The soil of Medoc, where stand 'Chateau Margaux,' 'Chateau La Fitte,' and 'Chateau La Tour,' is a bed of coarse gravel, among whose pebbles the eye can barely detect soil enough to support the lowest form of vegetable life. In the vicinity of Bezires, on the other hand, the land is rich and strong enough to yield any kind of a crop; yet Medoc grows wine that often sells for ten dollars per gallon, while that of Bezires sometimes sells for less than ten cents per gallon. In Burgundy there is a long hill on whose dark red ferruginous limestone sides a wretched thin covering of earth lies, like the coat of a beggar, revealing, not hiding, the nakedness beneath. Here stand little starveling vines, very slender and very low; yet here is the celebrated 'Clos Vaugeot,' and this is the hill, and these are the vines that yield a wine rivaling in excellence and value that of Medoc, and to the fortunate proprietor the Cote dor is what it signifies, 'a hillside of gold.1 At its base spreads out a wide and very fertile plain, covered with luxuriant vines, whose juice sells from ten to twenty cents per gallon.

"If you go farther northward and examine the hills of Champagne, you will find them to be merely hills of chalk; and these instances only illustrate the rule derived not from them alone, but abundance of others, that, for good wine, you must go to a dry and meagre soil. Yet we should be sorry to have to extend the rule, and say that the poorer the soil the better the wine, for there are certainly very few patches of ground in America that can match in poverty the mountains of Champagne, the hills of Burgundy, or the slopes of Medoc.