Tasted 3 times with mixed reviews, although we should discount the sample that came near the end of our gruelling 3.5 hour negociant tasting - we were all struggling by this stage... Produced from 60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 23% Merlot, 15% Cabernet Franc and 2% Petit Verdot. Quite classical with notes of pencil shavings, graphite and flowers. The palate offers flavours of fruit cake, crème de cassis and violet fruit. A powerful, strict d'Armailhac with splendid texture, extract and length, but not that harmonious at this early stage. It should knit together and become an impressive Pauillac.
Owned by the Baron Philippe de Rothschild empire, d’Armailhac has benefited from financial investment of its parent and the technological know-how of First Growth partner Mouton Rothschild. Situated to the north east of Pauillac on three plots: Plateau des Levantines et de L’Obelisque (near the Carruades croupe), Plateau de Petit Pibran and Le Croupe de Behere. There are currently 50 hectares of vines planted with 57% Cabernet Sauvignon, 23% Merlot, 18% Cabernet Franc and 2% Petit Verdot. Since 2005 the wines have been of excellent quality and the bar is continually being raised. For those who want First Growth wine-making at a fraction of the cost, you’d do well to look at Clerc Milon and d’Armailhac.
The Cabernet Sauvignon domanates the appellation, in fact some might justifiably call Pauillac the most classical expression there is of Cabernet based Claret. It is sandwiched between St-Julien to the south and St-Estèphe to the north, a stone’s throw from the Gironde Estuary. The excellent drainage of the intensely gravely soils are the key to quality, producing some of the world’s most long-lived wines. The First Growths of Latour, Lafite and Mouton-Rothschild are found here, while other great Châteaux include Pichon Baron, Pichon Lalande, Pontet Canet, Lynch-Bages and Grand-Puy-Lacoste.