COMPETITION RULES 2024
Article 1: Objectives of the competition
Citadelles du Vin international wine and spirits competition is organised in order to:
• Endorse, honour and present the best wines/wine spirits to buyers and consumers around the world by undertaking actions that target both the trade and the general public to help promote award-winning wines and boost sales.
• Organise or take part in professional events in France or abroad, to provide good visibility and facilitate contacts with professionals in the fields of tasting, the media and purchasing.
• Do everything possible to guarantee the best selection of wines / wine spirits from around the world, judged with complete impartiality and totally independently.
• Encourage the production of fine wines and stimulate their intelligent consumption as a civilising influence.
• Contribute to the spread of wine culture.
Article 2: Products admissible in the competition
The competition is open to all wines, special wines, dessert wines and wine spirits made according applicable legislation:
• in the country of origin, for countries outside the European Union,
• in Europe, for products from EU member states,
• in France, for French products.
All these products must be labelled with an indication of the country of origin where the grapes were harvested and vinified.
Article 3: Registration procedures
All participants must submit a duly-completed registration form corresponding to the product presented and make the relevant payment by check or bank transfer (postal registration) or by cheque, credit card or bank transfer (online registration) to the Citadelles du Vin before the deadline indicate on the competition website.
The COMPANY NAME or the NAME indicated in the ‘ENTRANT IDENTIFICATION’ section, as well as the ‘PRODUCT DETAILS’ section will be used on the DIPLOMA, the LIST OF AWARD WINNERS, and all CORRESPONDENCE. Incomplete forms will not be registered and the product will not be presented in the tasting.
No fees will be reimbursed in that case.
Registration fees are as follows:
• € 168 exclusive of VAT for 1 registered product.
• € 161 exclusive of VAT per product, for 2 registered products.
• € 141 exclusive of VAT per product, for 3 or more registered products.
These fees must be paid on registration.
If the registration fees have not been paid, the wines/wine spirits will not be presented in the competition. In compliance with European legislation, the organisers of an international event held in France are obliged to add 20 % tax (French VAT) to fees paid by all French participants, as well as those from the European Community who do not submit a VAT number. An invoice is sent to each participant by return.
In case of cancellation, the organisers retain all fees paid on registration, irrespective of the reasons for cancellation by a participant or by the organisers, except in the case stipulated in the last paragraph of Article 12.
Article 4: Samples
Samples presented for the competition must be taken from a homogeneous batch intended for consumption. The samples will be sent by the entrants who pledge on the honor of therepresentetiveness of the present batch. The minimum volume of the batch presented shall be at least 1,000 litres. Samples from smaller batches may be admitted to the competition, provided the total volume is no less than 100 litres.
For each entry, participants must sendbefore the deadline indicate on the competition website: for still, sweet and fortified wines:
– 4 BOTTLES, of 0.75 litre or 6 BOTTLES for containers less than or equal to 0.50 litre, bu register sample,
– Except for spirits: 2 BOTTLES whatever the container volume.
These bottles must wear their legal commercial label bearing the name or mark claimed on the registration form.
Samples must be accompanied by:
– Official analysis results less than one year old, identifying the samples and giving values for the following analytical parameters:
• actual and potential aclohol content by volume at 20°C, expressed in % vol,
• sugars (glucose + fructose), expressed in g/L,
• total acidity, expressed in mEq/L,
• volatile acidity, expressed in mEq/L,
• total dioxide of sulphur or total sulphur dioxide, expressed in mg/L,
• sparkling wines: excess pressure due to carbon dioxide, expressed in bars,
• semi sparkling wines: CO2, expressed in g/L.
– The statement of entitlement for wines entitled to a protected appellation of origin or geographical indication or the certification request for French products not entitled to a geographical indication presented with an indication of their vintage or grape variety or an official document proving the origin of non-French products.
– A consignment note: participants must ship their samples DDP (Incoterms 2020 Delivered Duty Paid, CRD for France, with shipping costs, customs’ duties and taxes paid by the sender).
Samples must be shipped to the following address: Citadelles du Vin – Rue Ulysse Lainé – 33710 BOURG – France.
Fill in the sender’s name and details on the box(es).
Any samples received after the due date; that do not correspond to the registration form; or not registered in advance (art. 3) will not be presented for tasting but remain the property of Citadelles du Vin.
Article 5: Sample classification
Samples admitted to the competition are placed in a special container during tasting to hide the shape of the bottle and ensure their anonymity. The original corks are changed before the competition. The samples are classified, divided into groups by product type, and presented for tasting according to their vintage, sugar content, and the aromatic intensity of the grape variety.
If fewer than three samples are registered in a particular category, they will not be included in the competition. The registration fees will be reimbursed in that case.
Article 6: Sample quality control
As the competition organisers need to ensure that the award-winning samples are representative of the whole batch, they may organise a prior inspection, appointing their own approved technical experts to take samples of the batches entered in the competition, anywhere in France or around the world. These samples may be analysed for comparison with the initial samples submitted.
Article 7: Tasting panels
Each wine/spirit is tasted by a panel of 5 tasters. All the judges have technical expertise in tasting. Most are oenologists. The judges are selected from a list of wine professionals.
Each jury has a president, whose duties include liaising with the organisers and ensuring that the jury functions properly.
The competition organisers collect sworn statements from panel members, disclosing any direct or indirect links with firms, establishments, professional organisations, or associations whose activities, products, or interests may concern wines/wine spirits presented in the competition.
O.I.V. has delegated an expert for the full duration of the competition. He submits a report on how the competition took place. Based on this report, or due to any other information they have received, O.I.V. can withdraw their approval at any time.
Article 8: Special prizes
Special prizes are awarded every year for categories chosen by Citadelles du Vin. These Prizes are awarded to Grand Gold or Gold medal-winning products with the highest score in their category, provided that over 20 samples have been entered in the category concerned.
Article 9: Awards
The organisers award Grand Gold, Gold Medals and Silver Medals to the samples that obtain the best scores. Medals may not be awarded to more than 30% of the samples presented in the competition. Awards are only granted if at least 3 different competitors have entered the competition or category concerned. The winners reserve the right to publish the results for their wines.
Article 10: Notification of awards
Each participant will be informed of the competition results by E-mail. It will specify the name of the competition, the category the product was competing in, the type of award, the identity of the wine, the stated volume, and the name and address of the owner. Winners are given personal access to the competition website to obtain an oeno-graph (graphic image of the tasting notes).
Citadelles du Vin issues a diploma to each winner and a trophy to each special prize winner.
So that winners can display their awards on their bottles, the organisers offer the following products for sale to winners:
– adhesive MEDALS,
– RIGHTS (to reproduce a medal).
Winners who wish to reproduce medals won at Citadelles du Vin on their labels, must apply for these rights. The awards obtained can only be displayed by these means. All unauthorised copies are strictly prohibited and punishable by law. The number of adhesive medals supplied or rights granted for an award-winning product shall not exceed the number of bottles declared on the registration form.
Specimens are sent out when the awards are announced, with an order form valid for 1 year only.
Article 11: Legal and contractual provisions
Citadelles du Vin organisers reserve the right to have award-winning samples analysed by an approved laboratory and take any subsequent steps they may deem necessary.
Operators who entered an award-winning wine/spirit in the competition and the organisers are each obliged to retain a sample of the wine or spirit in their possession, accompanied by its REGISTRATION FORM and analysis results. These samples shall be made available to inspectors for one year starting from the competition date. After that date, the bottles may be used for promotional or training purposes.
Samples that have not won awards are immediately available for use by Citadelles du Vin.
The REGISTRATION FORM and analysis results shall be made available to inspectors for five years starting from the competition date.
Entrants are legally liable for all information entered on the registration form. Citadelles du Vin may check its accuracy by all legal means, particularly concerning the conformity of the product found on the market with the control sample held by Citadelles du Vin.
The Bordeaux Court of First Instance (France) has sole jurisdiction in case of any challenge or dispute with Citadelles du Vin, irrespective of the nationality of the opposing parties. Only the French texts of documents issued by the competition have any official validity.
The Inspection Commission, consisting of at least 3 members, together with the CDV (Concours Des Vins) association, are solely responsible for ensuring compliance with the competition rules and submit the following to the DREETS of Nouvelle-Aquitaine:
• 2 months before the competition is held: a statement specifying the date and location of the competition, as well as the competition rules.
• Within 2 months after the competition, at the latest: minutes signed by the Head of the Inspection Commission, confirming that the competition was held according to the regulations and including, in particular:
◊ The number of products presented in the competition, overall and by category
◊ The number of award-winning products, overall and by category.
◊ The list of award-winning products and the details identifying each award-winning product and its owner.
◊ The percentage of award-winning products in relation to the number of wines presented.
◊ The number of awards and a breakdown by type.
Article 12: Cases of force majeure
The organisers cannot, in any case, be held liable if an external event prevents the competition from being held under normal conditions.
The viticultural competition (outside of spirits) is officially approved (decree of February 13rd, 2013 – Official Journal of February 22nd, 2013) and the awards given may be used in all forms of advertising subject to certain conditions (art.10).