Bottoms up in Bordeaux
No Growth in B'x Re-classificationMay 13th, 2010 | By Paul Moth | Category: News
Perhaps the most famous wine classification system in the world is that of Bordeaux, France. It may also be the most fractious and disputed. And it is “about to change,” says Chevalier Maurice Depanneur of Les Confrerie de Chevaliers du Vin de Bordeaux, the council that oversees Bordeaux and its products. “The 1855 classification divided wines into First, Second, Third, Fourth and Fifth growths. Everybody wants to be in the top bracket, that’s where the big francs are. But neophyte guzzlers sometimes feel lost when confronted by a wine list.”
The 1855 classification has been revised only once, despite the fact that only two of the properties remain in the same hands. This has lead many critics to question the merit of the ranking. While the top tier, “first growths” are still among the very best wines in the world, many 4th and 5th growths are better than 2nd and 3rds.
The confusion is only one of many reasons Bordeaux has seen its share of the wine-buying public shrink in recent years.
“Millionaires, Sheiks and Russian mobsters are still in the market for the best bottles.” Depanneur says, ” But the ordinary working man and the petit bourgeois are more and more buying wine from such disgusting places as Australia, Argentina and Bulgaria,”
So Bordeaux is fighting back. Les Confrerie de Chevaliers du Vin de Bordeaux has announced the first new classification in over a hundred and fifty years – Vin de Plonque.
“It is meant as an entry level arrangement, one in which even first-time wine buyers can feel comfortable,” Depanneur explains. “The other wines of Bordeaux will be classified into two new designations, “Agréable” and “Grande Non Favorable”. Now you will know which to buy.”
M Depanneur gave some examples.
“Entre Deux Mères” leads the Agréable category followed by “Chateau Grande Wazoo”, “Pichon Béchamel”, “Tour d’Ordure”, and “Maison Rizla.”
Grande Non Favorable Bordeaux include “Bas Couscous”, “Chateau Haut-Bages-Conservative”, “Mal Canard”, “Clos des Collaborators” and “St.-Semilla-Mon”.
“What do you say, world,” concludes Maurice Depanneur, “à table.”