St. Emilion Classification 2022: A Simple Guide

Dive into the prestigious world of Bordeaux wine with our simplified guide to the 2022 St. Emilion Classification. This system, unique to the St. Emilion wine region of Bordeaux, France, evaluates and ranks wines according to quality, reputation, and a host of other criteria.

Updated every few years, the classification is highly influential, often driving the global market value of these coveted wines. However, the 2022 iteration has stirred up some controversy, with prominent estates withdrawing from the process. In this guide, we will unpack the classification tiers, the evaluation process, and the impact of these recent disputes on the reputation and perception of St. Emilion wines.

Whether you’re an oenophile or a casual wine lover, this guide provides valuable insights into one of the most renowned wine regions in the world.

The Classification

The St. Emilion classification in 2022 is based on a comprehensive evaluation of wines from the region, with four distinct levels:

  1. Premier Grand Cru Classé A
  2. Premier Grand Cru Classé B
  3. Grand Cru Classé
  4. Grand Cru

Premier Grand Cru Classé A and B are the top tiers in the classification, representing the finest wines of St. Emilion. There are only two vineyards designated as Premier Grand Cru Classé A and twelve estates classified as Premier Grand Cru Classé B.

The third level, Grand Cru Classé, consists of 71 estates. However, the quality and consistency of these wines can vary significantly, with some, in my opinion, that could be classified as Premier Grand Cru, and others closer to the Grand Crus (of which there are over 200 of varying quality).

To be considered for Premier Grand Cru Classé A or B status, estates had to provide samples from the previous 20 or 15 vintages, respectively. A 20-point scoring system was employed, with Premier Cru Classé wines requiring a minimum of 16 points.

The Process

The 2022 classification involved a panel of 43 experts, who tasted 1,343 samples over four months. Points were awarded based on the following criteria:

  • 50% Tasting
  • 35% Reputation, Advertising, and Value
  • 10% Terroir, Property Tax Base, and Uniform Quality of the terroir
  • 5% Methods used in Winegrowing and Oenology

The Results

The 2022 classification results are as follows.

Premier Grand Cru Classé A:

  • Chateau Figeac (A)
  • Chateau Pavie (A)

Premiers Grand Cru Classé B:

  • Château Beausejour Duffau-Lagarrosse
  • Château Beau-Sejour Becot
  • Château Belair-Monange
  • Château Canon
  • Clos Fourtet
  • Château Canon La Gaffeliere
  • Château Larcis Ducasse
  • La Mondotte
  • Château Pavie Macquin
  • Château Troplong Mondot
  • Château Trotte Vieille
  • Valandraud

The Missing Premier Crus

The 2022 St. Emilion classification has faced some controversy, as several prominent estates, including Angélus, Ausone, Cheval Blanc, and La Gaffelière, withdrew from the process due to legal disputes and disagreements about the methodology. This has resulted in some of the region’s most renowned names being absent from the classification.

Grand Cru Classé

  • Château Badette
  • Château Franc Mayne
  • Château Montlabert
  • Château Balestard La Tonnelle
  • Château Grand Corbin
  • Château Montlisse
  • Château Barde-Haut
  • Château Grand Corbin-Despagne
  • Château Moulin Du Cadet
  • Château Bellefont-Belcier
  • Château Grand Mayne
  • Château Peby Faugeres
  • Château Bellevue
  • Château Guadet
  • Château Petit Faurie De Soutard
  • Château Berliquet
  • Château Haut-Sarpe
  • Château Ripeau
  • Château Boutisse
  • Château Jean Faure
  • Château Rochebelle
  • Château Cadet-Bon
  • Château La Commanderie
  • Château Rol Valentin
  • Château Cap De Mourlin
  • Château La Confession
  • Château Saint-Georges (Cote Pavie)
  • Château Chauvin
  • Château La Couspaude
  • Château Sansonnet
  • Château Clos De Sarpe
  • Château La Croizille
  • Château Soutard
  • Château Corbin
  • Château La Dominique
  • Château Tour Baladoz
  • Château Corbin Michotte
  • Château La Fleur Morange
  • Château Tour Saint Christophe
  • Château Cote De Baleau
  • Château La Marzelle
  • Château Villemaurine
  • Château Croix De Labrie
  • Château La Serre
  • Château Yon-Figeac
  • Château Dassault
  • Château La Tour Figeac
  • Clos Badon Thunevin
  • Château De Ferrand
  • Château Laniote
  • Clos De L’Oratoire
  • Château De Pressac
  • Château Larmande
  • Clos Des Jacobins
  • Château Destieux
  • Château Laroque
  • Clos Dubreuil
  • Château Faugeres
  • Château Laroze
  • Clos Saint-Julien
  • Château Fleur Cardinale
  • Château Le Chatelet
  • Clos Saint-Martin
  • Château Fombrauge
  • Château Le Prieure
  • Couvent Des Jacobins
  • Château Fonplegade
  • Château Mangot
  • Lassegue
  • Château Fonroque
  • Château Monbousquet

The 2022 St. Emilion Classification continues to reinforce the rich, diverse, and ever-evolving landscape of the St. Emilion wine region. Despite some contentious withdrawals that led to a shakeup in the usual lineup, the classification remains a reliable measure of the extraordinary quality and refinement that define St. Emilion wines. From the exclusivity of Premier Grand Cru Classé A to the wide array of Grand Crus, these wines are a testament to the region’s meticulous viticulture and the winemakers’ relentless pursuit of excellence.

Whether you’re a seasoned connoisseur or a novice enthusiast, understanding this classification can enrich your appreciation for Bordeaux wines. As you explore the wines listed in this guide, remember that each bottle tells a story of the unique terroir, the vintage year’s conditions, and the artistry of the winemaker. The world of St. Emilion wines is complex and captivating, much like the wines themselves. Enjoy the journey of discovery, one sip at a time.

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Written by

Bernard Marr has a deep passion for wine. He has written hundreds of articles on wine, including features for Forbes, covering wine-making and industry trends. Away from the world of wine, Bernard is a world-renown business and technology futurist. He is the award winning author of over 20 best-selling books and has a combined audience of nearly 4 million people across his social media channels and newsletters.

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