Château Branaire-Ducru: The Ducru Era

The Duluc family remained proprietors at Château Branaire for several decades, production rising to between 100 and 110 tonneaux per annum by the time Wilhelm Franck published the next edition of his Traité sur les vins du Médoc (second edition, Chaumas, 1845), and to 140 tonneaux by the time the 1850 Cocks et Féret went to the printers. They were still at the helm during the creation of the 1855 classification, when the property was ranked as a fourth growth. A year later, however, Louis Duluc died without a direct heir, and the property was managed by other family members, including his widow, his brother Justin Duluc, a sister and several nephews. This situation did not, however, last for long.

Château Branaire-Ducru

In 1857 the property was acquired by Jean-Baptiste Gustave Ducru (died 1879); he had married Rita Bouquier (died 1871), a wealthy widow, whose first husband had been one Jean-Baptiste Duluc, so it seems there was a family connection, if only by marriage. Gustave Ducru (as he was known) and his sister Marie-Louise Amélie Ducru, who went by the name of Zélie and who also took a share in the Branaire-Ducru estate, were proprietors of neighbouring Château Ducru-Beaucaillou.

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