Chateau d’Armailhac Reviews (Fifth Growth Bordeaux)

Chateau d’Armailhac Reviews

2017 Chateau d’Armailhac Reviews

Futures Pre Sale Price $48.00

Minimum Purchase 3 Bottles

Available November 2020

A blend: 68% Cabernet Sauvignon, 22% Merlot, 7% Cabernet Franc and 3% Petit Verdot.

Chateau d’Armailhac

94 Points James Suckling

Opulent and powerful for d’Armailhac with blackcurrants, blackberries and black olives. Full-bodied, tannic and extremely muscular. Very well done indeed.

93 Points Wine Spectator

Juicy and forward, with anise-tinged plum and cherry fruit backed by a light brambly structure. A lingering chalk echo adds length. This delivers nice latent depth.

92 Points Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate

A blend of 68% Cabernet Sauvignon, 22% Merlot, 7% Cabernet Franc and 3% Petit Verdot, the 2017 Chateau d’Armailhac is deep garnet-purple in color and very open on the nose with expressive notes of crushed black cherries, black raspberries and cassis with hints of baking spices, lavender and wood smoke. The palate is medium-bodied with a great core of vibrant red and black fruits, ripe, grainy tannins and superb freshness, finishing long and minerally.

91 Points Decanter

The dry conditions in the summer hurt the Merlots in many areas, and consequently many wines have a higher level of Cabernet. Here, they have used the highest percentage in Chateau d’Armailhac since 2002. There’s great energy to the pretty dark fruit; it’s not fleshy but it has a lovely sense of direction with concentration and beautiful extraction. Fine tannins lend good grip through the palate. The drought rather than the frost impacted yields here, but only to 40hl/ha. Harvested 6-29 September. 40% new oak. All blends at Mouton completed by 1 December, the earliest ever.

2016 Chateau d’Armailhac Reviews

Futures Pre-Sale Price $50.00

Minimum Purchase 3 Bottles

Available November 2019

A blend of 62% Cabernet Sauvignon, 28% Merlot, 8% Cabernet Franc and 2% Petit Verdot.

96 Points James Suckling

This is really tannic and muscular for Chateau d’Armailhac. Perhaps the most powerful ever. Full and chewy yet balanced and polished. Very, very impressive. Greatest ever?

95 Points Wine Spectator

Inviting, with notes of currant preserves and cherry sauce giving way to taut charcoal and singed alder accents. The chalky finish is a bit tight, but the stuffing is there. This has really good energy.

94 Points Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate

The 2016 Chateau d’Armailhac is a blend of 62% Cabernet Sauvignon, 28% Merlot, 8% Cabernet Franc and 2% Petit Verdot that was picked between 27 September and 14 October. The bouquet is very impressive, typical d’Armaihlac in terms of the opulence and flamboyance with lush black cherry and boysenberry fruit, a subtle floral note developing with time in the glass. The palate is medium-bodied with a crisp and tensile entry; there is immense purity here with some lovely blue fruit appearing on the finish. This is a d’Armailhac that is emboldened by unprecedented tannic structure that gives it real backbone and a sense of authority. Quite simply, this is one of the best wines of Château d’Armailhac that I have tasted, somehow not a million miles away from Grand Puy Lacoste in style.

94 Points Wine Enthusiast

This wine boasts soft tannins that are integrated into the black fruit core. It is juicy, with concentrated blackberry and plum flavors. A delicious stream of acidity floods the finish. A wine for the long haul, try after 2029.

93 Points Decanter

Such richness through the palate, with deep crushed blackberry notes alongside soft coffee bean. I get hints of Petit Mouton here. The Mouton stable measure their tannins in weight, not IPT, and this year comes in even higher than 2010, 4.5g compared to 4g. You don’t feel it because the grain of the tannins is so fine, but it is clearly going to age well, without any dryness. Incredible balance, with a pH of 3.55 giving freshness to the alcohol, and making these wines really not very difficult to taste. 62% Cabernet Sauvignon, 28% Merlot, 8% Cabernet Franc and 2% Petit Verdot, to be aged in 30% new oak.

2015 Chateau d’Armailhac Reviews

93 Points James Suckling

Berries and smoke with some wet-earth and leather undertones. Medium to full body, round and velvety tannins and a juicy and delicious finish. Like the walnut and coffee undertone. Drink in 2020.

93 Points Vinous

The 2015 Chateau d’Armailhac is a very sexy wine. Pliant, open-knit and delicious, the 2015 is super-classy. Sweet red cherry, pomegranate, blood orange and floral notes are seamlessly woven together in a surprisingly finessed wine for this property. Gracious and racy to the core, d’Armailhac is quite attractive. Based on what I have tasted over the last few years, quality appears to be on the rise, and that is always great to see.

92 Points Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate

Composed of 60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 29% Merlot, 9% Cabernet Franc and 2% Petit Verdot. The 2015 Chateau d’Armailhac displays a medium to deep garnet-purple color and exuberant notions of exotic spices. And potpourri over a core of black and red cherry preserves. Plus wild blueberries and a waft of tar. Medium to full-bodied, the palate reveals mouth-filling, juicy black berry flavors with approachable, grainy tannins and wonderful freshness on the finish.  

92 Points Wine Enthusiast

This wine is firm, almost classically Pauillac in its black currants and acidity. The tannins are present behind the bright fruit and crisp texture. This wine has a dry core that will need to soften. Drink from 2025.

92 Points Wine Spectator

A singed vanilla and alder frame keeps a medium-weight core of plum and black currant fruit coiled up while tobacco and violet details fill in. A pretty, fine-edged chalky spine holds the finish. Best from 2021 through 2031.  

91 Points Decanter

This starts slow, then gets into its stride. There is more sand in the terroir at Chateau d’Armailhac than Mouton, which is why its tannins are so fine, and why it often seems so refined even when young. This has a good level of freshness and juicy red fruits, but it’s a touch austere. It softens in the glass, and after a few minutes the fruit turns more brambly and attractive. This should be approachable within six to eight years. 35% new oak, because the aim is for earlier drinking than the other wines in the stable.

Bonus Reviews:

Jancis Robinson 17./20 Points

Particularly bright crimson. Savoury, lively nose. Drier and lighter than most but racy and satisfying in the new style. Good freshness and breadth. Really very polished.

2014 Chateau d’Armailhac Reviews

93 Points James Suckling

Very minerally, silky and refined with a full body, firm tannins and currants, stones and citrus. Racy and fine. This has a little more Merlot in the blend but is mostly Cabernet Sauvignon as always. One of the best Chateau d’Armailhacs in a long time.

92 Points Wine Enthusiast

A mild summer with cool nights kept the freshness in the Merlot grown on the gravel soil of this vineyard. As a result, this wine has delicious fruitiness and a crisp edge to go with the background of tannins.

90 Points Vinous

The 2014 Chateau d’Armailhac is absolutely delicious. Dark red cherry, plum, pomegranate, spice and floral notes are bold and exuberant in the glass. This is an especially extroverted, silky d’Armailhac long on class, finesse and resonance. All the elements are in the right place. Ripe, silky tannins add to an overall impression of creaminess, but there is also a terrific element of pure energy here. The 2014 has a bit more Merlot in the blend than usual and also clocks in around 13.8% in alcohol, which is high for the estate. More importantly, though, d’Armailhac is a real overachiever in this vintage. The blend is 50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 36% Merlot, 12% Cabernet Franc and 2% Petit Verdot.

90 Points Wine Spectator

Bright, juicy and engaging, with a racy damson plum and red currant core striped with singed cedar and vanilla and backed by a good twinge of iron. This is brisk and pleasantly taut. Textbook Pauillac. Tasted non-blind.

88 Points Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate

The Château d’Armailhac 2014 is a blend of 50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 36% Merlot, 12% Cabernet Franc and 2% Petit Verdot (slightly more Merlot than usual.) It will be matured in around one-third new oak. The opulence and richness is immediately apparent on the nose with hints of black olive infusing the black fruit. The palate is medium-bodied with slightly grainy tannin, quite dense black fruit with a spicy attack towards the saline finish. It feels a little abrasive at the moment but the rough edges should be rounded by the time.

2013 Chateau d’Armailhac Reviews

91 Points Wine Enthusiast

With great freshness, this is an attractive, fruity wine with final ripe berry flavors that are delicately leavened and given weight by tannins. There is already a drinkable balance from the fruit, although the wine needs more time to be in harmony. Drink from 2018.

90 Points James Suckling

A fresh and delicious red with blueberry, spice and chocolate. Medium body, fine tannins and a clean finish. A beauty. Drink now or hold.

87 Points Stephen Tanzer’s International Wine Cellar

Ruby-red. Plum, redcurrant, licorice and violet on the nose. Fresh, juicy and pure, showing flavors of blackberry, coffee and spicy herbs. Very precise wine thanks to lively, harmonious acidity. Finishes with sweet tannins and very good length. The yields (40 h/h) were the highest of any of the Mouton-Rothschild estates because the younger Merlot didn’t suffer shatter; once again, though, the aroma and flavor profile of this wine is heavily influenced by its old-vine Cabernet Franc. This may be even better than it’s showing today.

2012 Chateau d’Armailhac Reviews

A blend of  54% Cabernet Sauvignon, 29%, Merlot, 14% Cabernet Franc and 3% Petit Verdot.

92 Points James Suckling

This is very polished and refined with blackcurrant, raspberry and citrus-peel undertones. Full body, extremely fine texture and a long, long finish.

92 Points Vinous

A very pretty wine for the year, the 2012 Chateau d’Armailhac is plush, open and seductive. Dark red cherry, tobacco, wild herbs, smoke, leather and game are all pushed forward in a pliant, supple Pauillac that is already quite open and expressive. Dark red cherry, plum, tobacco, smoke and licorice meld into the pliant finish, all with sweet floral overtones that add to the wine’s considerable appeal.

91 Points Wine Enthusiast

Fruity and rich, this wine is developing fast. It is full of black currant fruits, with an impressive background of solid, structured tannins. The wine is linear, fresh, showing how well this property is developing its quality. It’s a wine for medium-term aging, so drink from 2018.

2011 Chateau d’Armailhac Reviews

Suggested Retail Price $60.00

92 Points James Suckling

This is very polished and refined with blackcurrant, raspberry and citrus-peel undertones. Full body, extremely fine texture and a long, long finish.

91 Points Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate

This impressive, deep, opaque ruby/purple wine, with loads of charcoal, crème de cassis and a flowery-ness, this is rich, medium to full-bodied, beautifully textured, quite pure, and avoids any of the astringency or hollowness that some Médocs possess in this vintage. The wine is complete and finishes authoritatively. The tannins are there, but ripe, integrated and velvety. This is a very impressive Chateau d’Armailhac to drink over the next 20-25 years.

91 Points Wine Enthusiast

Fruity and rich, this wine is developing fast. It is full of black currant fruits, with an impressive background of solid, structured tannins. The wine is linear, fresh, showing how well this property is developing its quality. It’s a wine for medium-term aging, so drink from 2018.

2010 Chateau d’Armailhac Reviews

A blend of 60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 23% Merlot and 15% Cabernet Franc.

93 Points Wine Spectator

Dense, juicy and inviting, with bouncy briar, blackberry, steeped black currant and melted black licorice notes framed by roasted apple wood and graphite notes. The finish courses along with good definition. Energetic and tempting, but the gripping, iron-laden finish will benefit from cellaring.

93 Points James Suckling

Polished and very fine with pretty fruit and berry structure. Full and silky with a delicious finish. It’s so good now to drink but has depth and structure. Drink or hold.

92 Points Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate

The 2010  Chateau d’Armailhac has a fabulous, opulent bouquet, with black cherries, boysenberry, almond and hints of cooked meat as it dabbles with secondary aromas. The palate is medium-bodied, with bold tannin, grippy in the mouth and immense weight. This is a very structured d’Armailhac, although it probably does not possess the finesse of the 2016, which I tasted alongside. There is great density here—tensile and bold, with a grippy finish. It is a long-term prospect. Tasted April 2017.