Union des Grands Crus de Bordeaux

Sharing a passion

Union des Grands Crus de Bordeaux History…

In Bordeaux, man has learnt to extract the very essence of an exceptional terroir and an exceptional climate. Moving beyond this mastery – born of a constant concern to improve the quality of their wines – the chateaux owners experienced very early the desire to share their passion with wine lovers the world over.

It was this desire to bring to the attention of the world the best of Gironde’s production that lay at the heart, in the 1970s, of a totally innovative approach to communication.

At that time, the initiatives that the viticulturists attempted abroad were the act of rare official bodies that brought together vintages drawn from the same geographical origin : in many cases the A.O.C.

For the viticulturists of that era, it was impossible to envisage travelling as regularly as today in order to meet wine professionals and journalists. The teams on the properties were thinly staffed, the communication budgets lacked funds, to say nothing of the fact that, in 1970, air transport had not yet been democratised.

Nevertheless, some rare Bordeaux wine producers were already touring the world in order to introduce their products. Six of these pioneers, owners of crus classés (classified growths), had the idea, on returning from a tour of Asia, to multiply the effects of their travels and to join forces in a collective framework together with growths of a quality at least equivalent to their own.

UGCB 44 years old

Established in 1973, the Union des Grands Crus de Bordeaux is an organisation that has, over the decades, developed wine-tasting programmes in France and abroad that have made a significant contribution to the reputation and image of the Grands Crus of Bordeaux.

In more than thirty years, no more than seven presidents have contributed to give the Union its present status. 133 both classified and not classified, sharing the same aspiration for quality and originating exclusively from the most noble appellations of the Gironde, Médoc, Graves and Pessac-Léognan, Sauternes and Barsac, Saint Emilion and Pomerol.

At the head of an extensive vine-growing area and a sector of activities that is essential for the region, the Union is a grouping of economic actors of prime importance. 5,240 hectares of vineyards located on the best of Bordeaux’s terroirs have thus been brought together in a federation representing 2,500 full-time employees and up to 7,000 temporary workers who record an average annual production of 236,000 hectolitres and total sales in excess of €300 million.

Presidents of the UGCB

In more than thirty years, no more than seven presidents have contributed to give the Union its present status.

  • Olivier BERNARD
  • Sylvie CAZES
  • Patrick MAROTEAUX
  • Alain RAYNAUD
  • Antony PERRIN
  • Peter SICHEL
  • Pierre TARI
  • Jean-Bernard DELMAS