The 1855 Bordeaux Classification

The 1855 Bordeaux Classification

The 1855 Bordeaux Classification

The ranking system put in place by Napoleon III still influences today's market.

This official list is still standing today despite some controversial issue because it doesn’t reflect the current reality of the business. 

It was created at the request of Napoleon III to be presented as part of “the Exposition Universelle”, a kind of world’s fair.

Napoleon wanted to showcase the very best French wines.

At the origin the classification was established by a wine merchant syndicate ranking sixty top Bordeaux reds from the Medoc one of which from the graves area and twenty-seven white sweet wines from Barsac and Sauternes area.

It was supposed to be founded on impartial criteria such as the quality, the reputation and the market value. 

165 years later, only one official revision has been done in 1973 (the promotion of Chateau Mouton Rothschild to premier cru/first growth). 

Due to several change as Chateaux’s name, owners, vineyards division and wine quality there are now 61 for the reds and 27 for the white sweet wines.

If you want an overview of the full updated list, please click on the link below: