Château Couhins

The history of Château Couhins can be traced back as far as the 17th century, when it was in the possession of the Banchereau family, who were notable lawyers in Bordeaux at the time. The estate was not known by the name Couhins when under their direction though, but was named Bourdieu de la Gravette instead. This family owned the property from 1700 to 1805, the proprietor during the early years of the 18th century being Alphonse Banchereau. After his death in 1730, the estate passed to a son named Jean-Baptise Banchereau. It was during his tenure that the presence of vines on the estate was first noted, on the Belleyme map, printed in 1760. Despite the existence of a vineyard here the family seem to have largely used the estate as a country retreat, and they were responsible for building a grand châteaux. They did also build some winemaking facilities though, to service the crop of the vineyard, which was largely planted with red varieties. Sadly these buildings have long been divorced from the Couhins estate, the château and a slice of the Couhins vineyard having been carved off in the latter years of the 20th century to create Château Couhins-Lurton. The two châteaux neighbour one another, and I will provide more detail on this split further down the page.

Château Couhins

First, back to the Banchereau era. Jean-Baptiste Banchereau died on the estate, leaving his widow in charge, and after her death in 1805 the estate seemed to change hands several times. By 1822 the proprietor was Dame Bonhomme-Lapointe, who yielded to Constant Mallet in 1832, then it passed to Charles Mougenot in 1844 and to Antoine Pestré in 1847. The story goes that it was then acquired by Antoine Lair (1791-1865), a wood merchant, who is said to have made the purchase in 1855, and that it remained in his family for some time.

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