Every year, following three blind tasting sessions organized in January, in April (for Crémant d’Alsace only) and in July, the Brotherhood Saint-Etienne awards a sign of quality known as the Alsace Wines “Sigille” or “seal”.
Only wines produced by members of the Brotherhood are eligible for this blind tasting competition. The bottles must come from the next to last vintage preceding the tasting.
To obtain this distinction, each wine must meet very strict criteria of typicity and quality, and pass an official laboratory analysis to verify its technical characteristics. Naturally, each wine is tasted “blind,” and as a matter of principle the Brotherhood never reveals the names of the producers whose wines are tasted within the walls of its Château.
Lastly, 12 bottles of each wine awarded a “Sigille” must be placed in the Brotherhood’s “Oenothèque” (wine library), which currently holds over 60,000 bottles, thus preserving the finest wines of each vintage since 1947, including, as part of the Méquillet Collection, wines dating as far back as 1834.
During every Chapter of the Confrérie and at all official and commented tastings held at the Château de Kientzheim, only wines bearing the “Sigille” label are served.