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The St Emilion classification has finally been signed off by the French government.

Saint Emilion can review its Classification every ten years and the French wine regulator INAO (Institut National de l’Orgine et de la Qualité) has approved a new set of regulations which will come into effect from the 2012 harvest onwards.

In total there are now 81 members in the classification, just below the peak of 84 members in the 1969 classification.

The legal notification of the classification, which has been in limbo since it was sent to the French Ministry of Agriculture in January 2011, was published in the Journal Officiel on June 16. This means that despite continuing internal wrangling, the classification is indeed going ahead.

INAO, the French government appellations body, will now distribute application forms to estates that wish to be considered for inclusion.

All chateaux - including those aspiring to the very top ranks, Grand Cru, Grand Cru Classe, and Premier Grand Cru Classé - will be tasted blind.

Wines will be assessed on taste, their terroir, where they sit in the market, and their existing reputation.

The principle of classifying the terroir rather than the estate has been relaxed slightly to bring the system closer to that of the Médoc, where classified growths are free to buy more land and include it in their current brand.

In Saint Emilion, there will be some flexibility, but it will still be tougher than on the Left Bank, requiring that similar quality and style of terroir be demonstrated. It has been agreed that properties will not challenge these latest classifications, and that they will remain in place for the next 10 years.

In a monumental decision, two Chateaux, Pavie and Angelus, were promoted to the Premiers Grands Crus Classes-A; the first additions to this top group since the classification’s inception in 1954.

Also of note were the upgrades of Mondot and Valandraud (both previously unclassified) to the Premiers Grand Crus Classes-B. Canon Le Gaffeliere and Larcis Ducasse were upgraded from Grands Crus to Grands Crus Classes-B.

There were 17 new additions to Grands Crus Classes:-

Cote De Baleau, Barde Haut, Le Chatelet, Clos De Sharpe, Clos Le Madeleine, La Commanderie Faugeres, De Ferrand, Fombrauge, La Fleur Morange, Jean Faure, La Marzelle, Peby Faugeres, De Pressac, Quinault L’Enclos, Rochebelle, Ansonnet.

Eight Chateaux demoted in 2006 kept their Grands Crus Classifications:-

Bellevue, Cadet Bon, Faurie De Souchard, Gaudet, Petit Faurie Soutard, Tertre Daugay (now Quintus), Villemaurine, Yon-Figeac.

Premiers Grands Crus Classés – A

Château Ausone

Château Cheval-Blanc

Château Pavie (Promoted August 2012)

Château Angelus (Promoted August 2012)

Premiers Grands Crus Classés – B

Château Beau-Séjour Bécot

Château Beauséjour


Château Bélair-Monange

Château Canon

Château Figeac

Clos Fourtet

Château La Gaffelière

Château Pavie-Macquin

Château Troplong-Mondot

Château Trottevieille

Château Canon-la-Gaffelière (Promoted)

Château Larcis-Ducasse (Promoted)

Château La Mondotte (Promoted)

Château Valandraud (Promoted)

Grands Crus Classés

Château L'Arrosée

Château Balestard La Tonnelle

Château Bellefont-Belcier

Château Bellevue

Château Berliquet

Château Cadet-Bon

Château Cap de Mourlin

Château Chauvin

Château La Clotte

Château Corbin

Château La Couspaude

Couvent des Jacobins

Château Dassault

Château Destieux

Château La Dominique

Château Faurie-de-Souchard

Château Fleur-Cardinale

Château Fonplégade

Château Fonroque

Château Franc-Mayne

Château Grand-Corbin

Château Grand-Corbin-Despagne

Château Grand-Mayne

Château Grand-Pontet

Château Les Grandes-Murailles

Château Guadet St-Julien

Château Haut Sarpe

Clos des Jacobins

Château Laniote

Château Larmande

Château Laroque

Château Laroze

Château La Marzelle

Château Monbousquet

Château Moulin-du-Cadet

Clos de l'Oratoire

Château Pavie-Decesse

Château Petit-Faurie-de-Soutard

Château Le Prieuré

Château Ripeau

Château St-Georges-Côte-Pavie

Clos St-Martin

Château La Serre

Château Soutard

Château Tertre-Daugay

Château La Tour Figeac

Château Villemaurine

Château Yon-Figeac

Château Cote De Baleau (Promoted)

Château Barde Haut (Promoted)

Château Le Chatelet (Promoted)

Château Clos De Sharpe (Promoted)

Château Clos Le Madeleine (Promoted)

Château La Commanderie Faugeres (Promoted)

Château De Ferrand (Promoted)

Château Fombrauge (Promoted)

Château La Fleur Morange (Promoted)

Château Jean Faure (Promoted)

Château La Marzelle (Promoted)

Château Peby Faugeres (Promoted)

Château De Pressac (Promoted)

Château Quinault L’Enclos (Promoted)

Château Rochebelle (Promoted)

Château Ansonnet (Promoted


Chateau La Cleusiere was bought and merged into Chateau Pavie

Chateau Cure-Bon was bought and merged in Chateau Canon in 2000

Château Cadet-Piola was bought by Château Soutard

Château Bergat was bought by Château Trottevieille

Château Haut-Corbin was bought by Château Grand-Corbin

Château Matras partly owned by Château Canon

Château Magdelaine merged to sister Château Bélair-Monange

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