Bordeaux Classifications

The 57 appellations of Bordeaux are not classified in a single official ranking. But the Médoc, Sauternes and Barsac, Graves, and Saint-Emilion districts do have their own official internal classification systems. Pomerol, one of Bordeaux's greatest assets, was not included in the 1855 Classification, and remains unclassified to this day. However, Château Pétrus is often included with the First Growths (Premiers Crus) of the 1855 Classification.

view counter

The Classification of 1855
Much like our World's Fair today, Napoléon III's 1855 Expositon Universelle de Paris was a chance for France to display its very best for the world to see. The Gironde Chamber of Commerce requested that a classification system be devised to accompany their display of the fine wines of Bordeaux. The Bordeaux Wine Brokers' Union went to work on the project and came up with what we now refer to as the Classification of 1855.

They came up with a five-class ranking system of the red wines from the Médoc region, with the exception of Château Haut-Brion from Graves, which had to be included due to its renown. The white wines of Sauternes and Barsac were also included in a two-class ranking. The list reflected the market's view of the relative quality between the wines in terms of the selling price and reputation of the various châteaux. Within each category, the châteaux were ranked in order of quality — or selling price.

Pour with Confidence!

Since 1990 The California Wine Club has featured the best of California’s small, artisan wineries.

Each month features a different winery and includes:

- Two bottles of limited production, award-winning wine
- Entertaining and informative 12 page club magazine, Uncorked
- A 100% satisfaction guarantee
- An opportunity to reorder your favorites at up to 50% off normal retail prices

$35.95 per month, plus s/h. No membership fees, no commitment.

Visit www.cawineclub.com to learn more.


Considering the fact that many châteaux have changed hands and with them the managment, thereby possibly effecting the quality of the wines for better or worse, the classification has held up remarkably well. The classification has only undergone one significant change in the last almost 150 years. By decree, on June 21, 1973, Château Mouton-Rothschild was promoted from a deuxieme cru to a premeir cru. At the same time, the premeir crus were to be listed in alphabetical order.

The 1855 Official Classification of the MÉDOC

First Growths (Premiers Crus) Commune

Château Lafite-Rothschild (Pauillac)
Château Margaux (Margaux)
Château Latour (Pauillac)
Château Haut-Brion Pessac (Graves)
Château Mouton-Rothschild (Pauillac)

Second Growths (Deuxièmes Crus) Commune
Château Rausan-Ségla (Margaux)
Château Rauzan-Gassies (Margaux)
Château Léoville-Las Cases (Saint-Julien)
Château Léoville-Poyferré (Saint-Julien)
Château Léoville-Barton (Saint-Julien)
Château Durfort-Vivens (Margaux)
Château Gruaud-Larose (Saint-Julien)
Château Lascombes (Margaux)
Château Brane-Cantenac Cantenac (Margaux)
Château Pichon-Longueville-Baron (Pauillac)
Château Pichon-Longueville, Comtesse de Lalande (Pauillac)
Château Ducru-Beaucaillou (Saint-Julien)
Château Cos d'Estournel (Saint-Estèphe)
Château Montrose (Saint-Estèphe)

Third Growths (Troisièmes Crus) Commune
Château Kirwan Cantenac (Margaux)
Château d'Issan Cantenac (Margaux)
Château Lagrange (Saint-Julien)
Château Langoa-Barton (Saint-Julien)
Château Giscours Labarde (Margaux)
Château Malescot Saint-Exupéry (Margaux)
Château Boyd-Cantenac Cantenac (Margaux)
Château Cantenac-Brown Cantenac (Margaux)
Château Palmer Cantenac (Margaux)
Château La Lagune Ludon (Haut-Médoc)
Château Desmirail (Margaux)
Château Calon-Ségur (Saint-Estèphe)
Château Ferrière (Margaux)
Château Marquis d'Alesme-Becker (Margaux)

Fourth Growths (Quatrièmes Crus) Commune
Château Saint-Pierre (Saint-Julien)
Château Talbot (Saint-Julien)
Château Branaire-Ducru (Saint-Julien)
Château Duhart-Milon-Rothschild (Pauillac)
Château Pouget Cantenac (Margaux)
Château La Tour-Carnet Saint-Laurent (Haut Médoc)
Château Lafon-Rochet (Saint-Estèphe)
Château Beychevelle (Saint-Julien)
Château Prieuré-Lichine Cantenac (Margaux)
Château Marquis-de-Terme (Margaux)

Fifth Growths (Cinquièmes Crus) Commune
Château Pontet-Canet (Pauillac)
Château Batailley (Pauillac)
Château Haut-Batailley (Pauillac)
Château Grand-Puy-Lacoste (Pauillac)
Château Grand-Puy-Ducasse (Pauillac)
Château Lynch-Bages (Pauillac)
Château Lynch-Moussas (Pauillac)
Château Dauzac Labarde (Margaux)
Château Mouton-Baronne-Philippe (Pauillac)
Château du Tertre Arsac (Margaux)
Château Haut-Bages-Libéral (Pauillac)
Château Pédesclaux (Pauillac)
Château Belgrave Saint-Laurent (Haut-Médoc)
Château de Camensac Saint-Laurent (Haut-Médoc)
Château Cos-Labory (Saint-Estèphe)
Château Clerc-Milon (Pauillac)
Château Croizet-Bages (Pauillac)
Château Cantemerle Macau (Haut-Médoc)

Tags: