Chateaux Beychevelle, Duhart Milon and Pontet Canet have been promoted to Second Growth, according to Liv-ex's new 1855 classification.
Carruades: ‘would be first growth‘
Every two years Liv-ex, the online trading platform, recalculates the 1855 classification using the original criteria: the price of the wines.
By this reckoning, Lafite, with an average price of £11,043 per case, consolidates its position at the top of the first growths.
It is followed by Latour, Margaux, Mouton, Haut-Brion and La Mission Haut Brion.
La Mission Haut Brion, at £3,400 per case, just makes first growth, though ‘it has started to fall behind’ its fellows, Liv-ex says in a report.
Third growth Palmer (£1655 per case) was promoted to the top of the second growths in 2009, where it remains, with fifth growth Lynch Bages (£931) close behind.
Beychevelle (£715), Duhart Milon (£1147) and Pontet Canet (£801) also become second growths, while Leoville Barton (£547) is relegated to third growth.
Second wines were not included: if they had been, based on price, Carruades de Lafite would be a first growth and Forts de Latour would be the top second growth.
Margaux’s Pavillon Rouge, Petit Mouton and Clarence Haut Brion would also make second growth.
The average price for each qualifying wine – those with a minimum production of 2000 cases – was calculated on 30th April for vintages 2005-2009.
The criterion for inclusion in a growth category, as in 1855, was on whether the average price falls into a pre-calculated price band.
For the first growths this was £3,300 and above, for the seconds £700 to £3,229, thirds £400 to £699 and so on.
Liv-ex modified these price bands from those used in 2009 by calculating the difference between 2009 and 2011 average prices and applying a modifier.
The change in the bands ranged from 11% for the fifth growths to more than 60% for the first growths, whose priceband was £2000 and above in 2009.
Written by Adam Lechmere