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Wines announced for the 2011 Crus Bourgeois du Médoc

Published:  18 September, 2013

The Alliance des Crus Bourgeois du Médoc in Bordeaux has announced the 256 wines that are the official selection of Crus Bourgeois for the 2011 vintage.

The Crus Bourgeois dates back to the middle ages and refer to the bourgeois of Bordeaux which acquired the finest properties in the region in the 15th century through the sale of wine, which were initially referred to as the "Crus des Bourgeois" and then simply the "Crus Bourgeois".

A few centuries later and having survived several wars, the 300 remaining chateaus of the Crus Bourgeois in the 19th century, began to demand higher prices for wines compared to other producers.

Fast forward two centuries and in 2000 a ministerial order was signed formalising the rules for the organisation of the Crus Bourgeois classification. This was an open classification by the Bordeaux Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the Gironde Chamber of Agriculture and the Fédération des Grands Vins of Bordeaux. Its purpose was to establish a quality hierarchy for the Crus Bourgeois for the AOC wines of "Médoc", "Haut-Médoc", "Listrac", "Margaux", "Moulis", "Pauillac", "Saint Estèphe" and "Saint Julien". The classification consisted of three quality categories : Crus Bourgeois Exceptionnels, Crus Bourgeois Supérieurs and Crus Bourgeois.

The 2013 classification was established by a jury of 18 professionals recognised in the Place de Bordeaux who had to judge the wines on the basis of seven criteria: the nature of the terroir, the grape variety, the approach taken in the vineyard, to the wine-making, to the management and general presentation of the property, to the bottling conditions, to consistency in the quality of the product, and the wine's reputation and to the organoleptic qualities of the wine.

Between 2007 and 2009, following the remarkable mobilisation of the wine producers of the Médoc in the formation of the Alliance des Crus Bourgeois du Médoc, the traditional centuries old description of "Cru Bourgeois", was reborn thanks to the rigorous quality assurance procedure put in place by the union. This collective approach has enabled the description to be saved, while at the same time proposing a form of quality assurance that has been recognised by the public authorities.

In 2009, the new quality assurance initiative was approved by the public authorities authorising a qualitative selection procedure for the Crus Bourgeois du Médoc. The Crus Bourgeois du Médoc Official Selection has been published every year in September since 2010.

Previous Official Selections include the 2008 Official Selection which had 243 Crus Bourgeois du Médoc and encompassed 25 million bottles, the 2009 Official Selection which had 246 Crus Bourgeois du Médoc and covered 32 million bottles  and the 2010 Official Selection which had 260 Crus Bourgeois du Médoc and featured 32 million bottles.

The 2011 Crus Bourgeois du Médoc covers 4,400 hectors of vines that produce 28 million bottles and constitutes 30%of the Médoc's production.

To see the complete list click here.