The 2017 d’Armailhac has an opulent bouquet despite this comprising one of the highest percentages of Cabernet Sauvignon ever, which Philippe Dhalluin attributes to the maturity of the berries. There is some lovely cassis and blueberry fruit here with a smear of vanilla. The palate is structured with fine tannin, here the Cabernets are much more expressive with a fine bead of acidity, an attractive pencil lead tincture coming through towards the finish. This is a more floral d’Armailhac that will drink well for the next decades. [Readers should note that my sample included 60% new oak although the final blend will be 40%.] Tasted three times with consistent notes. Drink 90-92.
|Score: 90/92||Neal Martin, vinous.com, May 2018|
A blend of 68% Cabernet Sauvignon, 22% Merlot, 7% Cabernet Franc and 3% Petit Verdot, the 2017 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.
|Score: 90/92||Lisa Perrotti-Brown MW, Wine Advocate (236), April 2018|
Opulent and powerful for d’Armailhac with blackcurrants, blackberries and black olives. Full-bodied, tannic and extremely muscular. Very well done indeed.
|Score: 93/94||James Suckling, JamesSuckling.com, April 2018|
The 2017 d'Armailhac is soft, open-knit and fruity, with plenty of luscious fruit and considerable near-term appeal. Gentle contours, silky tannins and lifted aromatics add to the wine's appeal. Because of the late-season rains and their negative effect on Merlot, the 2017 has the highest percentage of Cabernet Sauvignon (68%) since records exist, with the exception of the 2002. "After the frost, which did not really affect us, the major challenge in 2017 was heat stress," Mouton Technical Director Philippe Dhalluin told me. "We had no rain until the end of June. Then, in September, when we needed a bit of rain again, we got more than double what would have been optimal. The September rain affected the Merlot and Cabernet Franc, while the Cabernet Sauvignon was able to take advantage of the last 15 days of the growing season, which were much more favorable. In the cellar, we opted for longer macerations at lower temperatures, as we wanted to avoid extracting the type of hard tannins that mark other vintages with very dry summers, such as 2011."
|Score: 87/90||Antonio Galloni, vinous.com, May 2018|
Very dark crimson with purple rim. Intense aroma of pure cassis and graphite, inviting mineral dustiness. Rich and full-fruited on the palate. Again, there's depth here as well as freshness. Chalky/chewy tannins on the finish but balanced by the fruit. Mouth-watering finish.
|Score: 16||Julia Harding MW, JancisRobinson.com, April 2018|
In 2017 the grapes were picked from September 6th to 29th and the final blend is 68% Cabernet Sauvignon, 22% Merlot and 3% Petit Verdot. Spicy plums and red fruits on the nose here, which is a little closed at this stage. The palate is fresh and sappy, with firm tannins that will need some time to resolve and integrate into the compact and crunchy fruit core. Bright and pure through to the finish with some exotic and smoky spices.
|Score: 14.5||Farr Vintners, April 2018|
Fresh and fragrant the nose is light with bramble and bilberry. It does fill out inn the middle depth of fruit the richness balanced by freshness with rich black cherry coming through at the back. Drink 2024-2035.
|Score: 87/89||Derek Smedley MW, DerekSmedleyMW.co.uk, May 2018|
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 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.
Drinking Window 2025 - 2038
|Score: 91||Jane Anson, Decanter.com, April 2018|
A lovely mid-red, glossy colour with a dense foresty nose and taut fruit on the palate, this is a closed, firm d’Armailhac with nice richness and a slate-y, cool finish. There is a decent amount of spice here, presumably from the slight under-ripeness and this matches well with the stern fruit.
|Score: 17.5+||Matthew Jukes, Matthew Jukes' Blog, April 2018|