20th Anniversary of Master of Wine student trip to Bordeaux with the Grands Crus Classés en 1855

13 Mar 17

13 March 2017 - The Institute of Masters of Wine and the Conseil des Grands Crus Classés en 1855 (Médoc & Sauternes) are celebrating the 20th Anniversary of the MW student trip to Bordeaux.

The Conseil des Grands Crus Classés en 1855, the professional organisation which upholds and protects the 1855 classification and its image, became a Supporter of the Institute in 1997. Since then, they have welcomed over 500 MW students from twelve different countries to support their journey on the MW Study Programme by enhancing their knowledge of Bordeaux.

On the 20th Anniversary trip, from 13 to 16 March 2017, the students will visit and taste at châteaux in the region including (in order of visit) Haut-Brion, d’Yquem, Guiraud, Lafite-Rothschild, Mouton Rothschild, Batailey, d’Issan, Pontet-Canet, Belgrave, Durfort-Vivens, Margaux and Pichon Baron.

The visits will include lunches and dinners to better understand food and wine pairings, and seminars led by managers of the growths including terroir of the fine wines of the Médoc and Sauternes, vinification and ageing, the Bordeaux marketplace system (merchants, brokers, primeurs), the history of the 1855 classification and the role of the Conseil des Grands Crus Classés en 1855.

To celebrate the 20th Anniversary, Masters of Wine will also travel to Bordeaux to join the MW students. The whole group will start at Château Haut-Brion to honour the late Professor Denis Dubourdieu. For several years on this trip, Professor Dubourdieu gave the MW students a lesson on blending Bordeaux wines, and his contribution will be commemorated with a lunch and tasting at the Château.

Olivier Chapman, Head of Study Programme and Development at the Institute of Masters of Wine said, “The Institute is enormously grateful to the Conseil des Grands Crus Classés en 1855 for offering MW students such a generous and insightful programme of visits over the last 20 years. Students have benefitted from tastings, visits and hospitality of the highest order. The time and energy given to welcome each group of students has been enormous and the MW students and Masters of Wine attending the 2017 trip together is a fitting way to commemorate the 20th year of the programme being offered.”

Pictured Château HAUT-BRION, Masters of Wine, MW students, Jean-Philippe DELMAS CEO Domaine Clarence Dillon and Philippe CASTEJA Président Conseil des Grands Crus Classés en 1855 (Médoc & Sauternes).

For more information please contact:
Sarah Kirkpatrick
Marketing and Communications Manager
Institute of Masters of Wine
+44 (0)207 383 9131

Notes to Editors:
The Institute of Masters of Wine (IMW) is a professional body with an unsurpassed international reputation. The Masters of Wine (MWs) hold the most respected title in the world of wine. The IMW promotes excellence, interaction and learning across all sectors of the global wine community. There are currently 356 Masters of Wine today, working in 29 countries. The Membership encompasses winemakers, buyers, journalists, shippers, business owners, consultants, academics, and wine educators. There are over 340 students in the MW Study Programme from 40 countries.

Conseil des Grands Crus Classés en 1855 (Médoc & Sauternes)
The 1855 Classification of Médoc and Sauternes wines holds a unique place in the history of wine. Not only because it was the first, but because it is the most enduring. Commissioned by Napoleon III for the 1855 Exposition Universelle in Paris, this famous ranking was designed to be the basis for a display that would demonstrate to visitors—who could not actually taste the wines—the superior quality represented by Bordeaux’s best production. The Chamber of Commerce entrusted the task of drawing up this list to the Brokers’ Union, which relied on decades of statistical information to select the region’s top wines. Published on April 18, 1855, the classification was the confirmation of an existing market and the evolution over more than a century.

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For an overview of past activities, read our Annual Review 2016-2017