Restored with Loving passion & Knowledge
The marriage of Eleanor of Aquitaine and Louis Le Jeune, son of Louis le Gros, King of France, united the north and south of France under one sovereignty.
As Queen of France, Eleanor, Duchess of Aquitaine, granted a charter for a monastery to be constructed as a commandery of the Hospitaller Order of the Knights of St John of Jerusalem on the current site of Château De La Ligne. Charles VII, who regained control of the province from the English, took possession of the lands and gave them to the Marquis de Chapelas. The Hospitallers were expelled from the monastery.
On March 11th 1152. divorce was granted and Eleanor was removed from the court of Louis, taking with her all those noble territories that had been annexed to the crown of France. On May 18th 1152, Eleanor gave her hand to Henry Plantagenet, Count of Anjou.. Shortly after the death of King Stephen of England, on December 19th 1154, Henry and Eleanor were crowned King and Queen of England in Westminster Abbey. Henry is alleged to have died of a broken heart at Fontevraud on July 6th 1189 when Eleanor entered a nunnery where she too died on March 21st 1204 at the age of 82.
While we can suppose that wine was produced on the lands surrounding the monastery at Château de la Ligne for quite some time before, the earliest written records of wine production at Château de La Ligne date from 1874 when the estate of 200 hectares produced 158,000 litres of wine. The vineyard was the principle property in the district at that time and reputedly produced among the highest quality wines of the area.
The winemaking tradition has been associated with Lignan and the adjacent villages for centuries. Usually linked with the Roman legions, the production of wine is also closely connected to religious orders. Records of wine production can be traced back to the Middle Ages and the Benedictine monks at the nearby Abbey of La Sauve Majeure. The last production of Château de La Ligne was in 1956 when, following a historically severe winter in Bordeaux, the dead vines were uprooted and the vineyard transformed into meadow.
The estate was purchased by Belfast Businessman, Mr Terry Cross, on Saint Patrick’s Day 2000. An erstwhile or latter-day “oie sauvage”, Mr Cross has re-planted an 11 hectare vineyard in the best traditions of Bordeaux with the unique ambition to re-establish Château de La Ligne as a gem of the Bordeaux appellation.
Mr Terry Cross has employed the expertise of viticultural and agronomical advisors to revive the vineyard of Château de La Ligne in order to produce a wine of optimum quality. Today, Mr Gilles Pauquet and Mr Stephan Toutoundji, consultant winemakers to Château Cheval Blanc (le Grand Cru Classe in Saint-Emilion) are the consultant oenologists to Château de la Ligne and are developing the necessary modern winemaking facilities.