Provence Cru Classé : an exceptional title !

The History of the Cru Classé


The history of the Côtes de Provence Classified Growths commenced in 1895 when certain "Propriétaires Vignerons du Var" recognized the importance of uniting to defend and promote their wines and properties.

In 1947, driven by the determination of these individuals, a commission of experts, supervised by the INAO, meticulously selected 23 estates in Provence through a rigorous examination of their terroir, expertise, and reputation.

Following the esteemed example of Bordeaux's most prestigious wine regions, these estates and Châteaux of Provence were conferred the title of "Cru Classé," a decision officially sanctioned by the Côtes de Provence appellation. Subsequently, these estates committed to producing three colors of wine—red, rosé, and white—to ensure consistency of quality and authenticity throughout the vinification and maturation process, with bottling conducted at the estate in Provence.

Their dynamic and forward-thinking approach led the region to achieve the status of Vin de Qualité Supérieure in 1951 and subsequently the rank of Appellation d'Origine Contrôlée in 1977—an honorific title that emphasizes quality.

In the 1990s, contemplation arose regarding the creation of a Club des Crus Classés. Beyond economic and technical considerations, these winegrowers aimed to champion the ethical values shared by the Crus Classés.

Through regular gatherings, this group evolved into a forum for exchange, fostering a genuine "Cru Classé culture" with progressive objectives and a commitment to perpetuating traditions and expertise. They also endeavored to share the Cru Classé spirit with experts and enthusiasts of great wines, attributing to them cultural value and an element of aspiration.

Today, the narrative endures as 18 estates and châteaux stand united to affirm and convey their "Cru Classé" identity—a unique distinction bestowed upon them by their peers in 1955. Their collective ambition is to establish this hierarchy as a recognized symbol of excellence and to perpetuate this distinguished title.