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The 13th century poem "La bataille des vins" (The Battle of the Wines) by the minnesinger Henri d'Andeli suggests that competitions probably already existed in the Middle Ages. It tells of a competition between 70 wines with a surprise winner. Especially in France, there were already more or less regular evaluations of a larger scale in the 19th century. The first international wine competitions were organised, among other things, in the context of the World's Fairs, the first of which took place in London in 1851.

Famous wine classifications

Probably the best-known wine classification from this period is the legendary Bordeaux classification. This took place in Paris in 1855 under the aegis of Napoleon III (1808-1873), also on the occasion of a world exhibition. These are so-called pre-phylloxera wines (before phylloxera), which are therefore very different from the wines of these 61 châteaux, most of which still exist today, due to completely different production techniques. Nevertheless, after one and a half centuries, some producers still proudly advertise the rank they achieved in the process on their labels. From modern times, the probably most intensive and longest classification known under the name Paris Wine Tasting should be mentioned, which took place with partly the same wines in four stages over a period of thirty years.

Voices of our members

Dr. Christa Hanten

For my many years of work as an editor with a wine and culinary focus, I always like to inform myself about special questions at Wine lexicon. Spontaneous reading and following links often leads to exciting discoveries in the wide world of wine.

Dr. Christa Hanten
Fachjournalistin, Lektorin und Verkosterin, Wien

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