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Château Cos Labory

Château Cos Labory

On a corner of the D2, almost on the boundary between the Pauillac and St Estèphe appellations, sits the golden sandstone edifice that is Château Cos d’Estournel. Decorated with a triumphal archway and festooned with more pagodas than a Song Dynasty temple, it is a hotspot for visitors to the region, so much so that opposite the château there is a lengthy lay-by where drivers can park up before getting out to take the requisite photographs. On driving past it is rare not to see at least one happy photographer there, even in the depths of winter.

Château Cos Labory

While these disciples of Bordeaux obsess over the magnificence of Cos d’Estournel, how many take a glance at the rather more traditional building just to its left, I wonder? It does not present such a dramatic facade, and what appeal it does possess is mostly obscured by several large trees planted just a few metres from the front door; as a result, from the roadside, it is difficult to gain anything other than a view of the side of the château. Nevertheless, this is another of St Estèphe’s more significant estates, a sibling of Cos d’Estournel – the two have some shared history – and one of just five classed growth châteaux in the commune. In truth for many years the estate has lagged behind its neighbour not just on the basis of its rather dour architecture, but also on the quality of its wines. In 2023, however, there came a significant change in ownership, so this property – Château Cos Labory – is now certainly an estate to watch.

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