Château Cos Labory
Telephone: +33 (0)5 56 59 30 22
Visits: By appointment only
Details: Saint-Estèphe, 5ème cru classé, 18ha, gravel and clay over limestone
Vineyards: Cabernet Sauvignon 55%, Merlot Noir 33%, Cabernet Franc 10%, Petit Verdot 2%
Historians say the Cos, here and at neighbouring Cos d’Estournel, evolved from early French for ‘hill of stones’ or, more simply, ‘hilly’. From François-Armand Labory, came the second part of the estate name. But long before Labory, the owner in the 18th century was Pierre Gaston. He was followed by his son Hyacinthe (who, it’s said, won the estate in an inheritance lottery following Gaston senior’s death) and later by Hyacinthe’s daughter Marie-Sany who became Madame Labory. Madame Labory’s death sparked off a string of court cases over inheritance – a rumpus which ended in a disputed take-over in 1847 by Louis Gaspard d’Estournel: he sold on within a decade to Charles Martyns, an English banker. By 1860 the estate was again changing hands – several times (including seizure by the Compagnie Algerienne Bank) until it came in 1922 to the Weber family. Today, Bernard Audoy – son of Cecile Weber (a distant cousin of the original Weber owners) and the late François Audoy – is in the driving seat, assisted by his mother and brothers.