Bordeaux introduced the concept of classification in 1855 under Napoleon III, and it now serves as an expression of quality and prestige worldwide. The principle of the crus classés (“classified growths”) perfectly illustrates the synthesis of a terroir’s typical characteristics and dedicated human intervention over many generations to ensure quality.
It should be emphasized that a wine or appellation can still be outstanding even if it is not a part of these classifications!
There are several classifications in Gironde, listed in order of seniority:
The 1855 classification
The Graves classification
The Saint-Émilion classification
The Crus Bourgeois du Médoc classification
The Crus Artisans classification