CHÂTEAU D'ARMAILHAC

2020 5ème Cru Classé Pauillac

EN PRIMEUR

The 2020 d’Armailhac, raised in 50% new oak with a planned 17-month barrel maturation, is a little deeper in color compared to the Clerc Milon. I find more complexity on the nose of blackberry, briar, cedar and pencil box aromas, less extravagant than previous vintages and more terroir-driven, perhaps. The palate is medium-bodied with fine tannins that have a little more edge than the Clerc Milon, plus there is slightly more mineralité and depth. In particular, the finish is very harmonious and fans out wonderfully. This Château d’Armailhac is a splendid wine in the making, and one of the best examples from the estate that I have tasted out of barrel. 92-94 Neal Martin Drinking range: 2026 - 2042 Rating: 92-94 Neal Martin, www.vinous.com (May 2021)

In Bond

75cl bottles (wood case of 6)

* This is a pre-shipment/primeur offer. All orders are accepted under the TERMS of this offer which differ from the terms of the rest of the site.

The 2020 d'Armailhac is bold, assertive and full of character. Inky red fruit, red plum, iron, gravel and incense all hit the palate. The tannins are a bit severe, but then again, that's Armailhac. The Cabernets seem especially expressive, in both the aromatics and the tannin structure. One of the recent developments here has been a move toward slightly longer élevage to complement fruit that is a bit more structured than in the past because of changes in farming. Tasted two times. Drinking range: 2026 - 2040 Rating: 89-91 Antonio Galloni, www.vinous.com (Jun 2021)

A blend of 59% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot, the balance Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot, hitting 13.2% alcohol, the 2020 Château D'Armailhac sports a vivid purple hue to go with beautiful cassis and blackberry fruits intermixed with lots of chalky minerality, toasty oak, graphite, and tobacco. It has the round, supple style of the vintage yet still brings ample tannic grip, solid mid-palate depth, and a great finish. It's beautifully done and should be drinkable with just 2-4 years of bottle age yet age just fine. Rating: 92-94 Jeb Dunnuck, www.jebdunnuck.com (May 2021)

Medium to deep garnet-purple colored, the 2020 D'Armailhac strides confidently out of the glass with classic scents of cassis, warm plums and cedar chest, plus wafts of pencil lead, bay leaves and kirsch. The medium-bodied palate has a sturdy frame of chewy tannins and plenty of freshness to support the crunchy black and red fruits, finishing savory. The blend this year is 59% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot, 8% Cabernet Franc and 3% Petit Verdot, with an alcohol of 13.3%. Drinking range: 2024 - 2037 Rating: 90-92 Lisa Perrotti-Brown, RobertParker.com (May 2021)

A little austere on the opening beats. Carving out its place more clearly alongside its two Pauillac siblings, this has some excellent sappy dark fruits, plenty of tannins and power but also elegance and confidence. This Armailac is gorgeous, lovely mid palate dept, and plenty of juicy blueberry and bilberry fruit, with lift through the finish, 3% Petit Verdot completes the blend. 50% new oak. Harvest September 7 to 29. The new cellar with be finished for the 2021 harvest, but this one was made in the temporary cellar. I really like this, it has a floral edge, a juice and freshness and sense of elegance; a good two minutes after you have stopped tasting a wave of subtle smoke comes in - the after wash of a fine gravel terroir. 50% new oak, harvest from September 7 to 29 across the three estates. Drinking range: 2028 - 2042 Rating: 93 Jane Anson, Decanter (May 2021)

Deep and brooding with wells of black fruit and even some liquorice and spice here, this is a huge success for d’Armailhac and there is more than enough intensity to shrug off the oak and tannin and this puts it in rather exclusive company in this vintage. There is a considerable degree of polish, elegance and control here in spite of the exuberance of the fruit and there is no excess fat either, making this is pure, Cabernet-driven wine with a refreshing finish. Simply lovely. Rating: 17.5+ Matthew Jukes www.matthewjukes.com (May 2021)

59% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot, 8% Cabernet Franc, 3% Petit Verdot. Aromatic finesse with perfumed, floral notes. Mid palate is juicy and fresh, backed by firm, grainy tannins. Confirmed structure but slightly chewy finish. Drinking range: 2026 - 2035 Rating: 16.5 James Lawther MW, www.JancisRobinson.com (Apr 2021)

Château d’Armailhac, which has had more names than it has needed over the years (having been Château d’Armailhacq, Château Mouton-d’Armailhacq, Château Mouton-Baron-Philippe, Château Mouton-Baronne-Philippe finally, Château d’Armailhac), was originally part of a larger Pauillac estate owned by the Marquis de Ségur. This was sold off in three lots, which became Château’s Pontet-Canet, d’Armailhac and Mouton-Rothschild. It came into common ownership with its famous neighbour to the north in 1933 when Baron Philippe de Rothschild bought the estate. There are 50ha under vine, which are planted to just under 60% Cabernet Sauvignon with roughly 20% each of Cabernet Franc and Merlot, and a tiny amount of Petit Verdot. The wines spend around 16 months in barrique, about 30% new oak with rest being old barrels from Château Mouton Rothschild. The wines are, generally, softer than other wines from Pauillac or other wines in the Rothschild portfolio, but amongst the best value. The relatively high proportions of Merlot and Cabernet Franc make d’Armailhac a good bet in lesser vintages too.

Please make sure that you have read the terms of this offer which are different from those on the main website. If you are unclear as to what is involved in primeur purchases please do contact our private client team via email or on 0207 221 1982.

Ordering

Prices are all in bond by the case size stated.

Pre-Orders are a firm commitment to buy wines on release, as long as the release price sits within the upper and lower price bands set by you on the pre-order form. Pre-orders will be fulfilled subject to availability but providing this firm commitment to buy effectively gives you priority and is a good idea for the most desirable wines.

Wines listed on the website can be ordered in the usual way via the website wishlist order form. You can also send orders directly to our private client team via email. Please note that, for the most sought after wines, priority will be given to those who ordered the same wines last year and to those that have pre-ordered.

Confirmation

All orders will be confirmed by email and are binding unless written cancellation is received within seven days of email confirmation. Pre-orders are not binding if the release price is above your upper price band.

Invoices are all raised at the in bond price (excluding any duty and VAT) which will become payable at the prevailing rates when the wines arrive in the UK, should you wish to take duty paid delivery.

Payment is required on sight of invoice, by cash, cheque, debit card or bank transfer. We regret we cannot accept credit cards for en primeur orders. We reserve the right to apply a dunning charge of 2% per month on invoices unpaid after 30 days.

Delivery

  • Shipment to our bond (at LCB Creek Road) and insurance are included in the in bond price.
  • Delivery is free to Lea and Sandeman / Elephant storage accounts, both duty paid and in bond.
  • Other deliveries (In Bond and Duty Paid) are also free subject to a minimum order from the offer of £500. Orders below this total will be charged an administration and handling fee of £16.50+ VAT when invoices are issued. We will group deliveries and this is a charge for your entire purchases, not a per-case charge.
  • Delivery of 2020 Bordeaux bought en primeur is expected during 2023. Delivery dates may vary as wines are shipped from Bordeaux at different times.
  • We do not anticipate any problems but please be aware that delays to delivery may occur should Britain's possible departure from the European Union result in additional border customs checks or other regulatory requirements. Any additional or unforeseen duties, tariffs, charges or other financial liabilities relating to 'Brexit' must be due to the customer and will be invoiced as required.

Practical notes - how it works

We start a sale in each customer's name and add all their primeur orders to one sale which is invoiced at the end of the campaign (or when the customer wishes). Immediate payment of invoices is then required by cash, cheque, debit card or bank transfer. We and our customers find that having a single invoice for the vintage is the simpler option but please note that confirmed orders are still binding even if the final invoice has not yet been issued.

Please specify on your wishlist order form where you would like the wines shipped on arrival in the UK. If this is to a third-party bonded warehouse, please specify the relevant account details. If the wines are required duty-paid we will issue a second invoice for duty and VAT at the prevailing rate when the wines are available for delivery.

Half-bottles, Magnums and larger bottles.

One of the additional advantages of buying en primeur is being able to order the wine in the format you want. While most of our listings are for 75cl bottles, we can source wines in any format if offered by the Château. Please note that format requests cannot be changed once wines have been invoiced. Additional charges for special formats do apply and are as follows:-

  • +£20 per case of 24 half-bottles
  • +£10 per case of 6 Magnums (2 bottles equivalent, 1.5 litres each)
  • +£35 per individually boxed Double Magnum (4 bottles equivalent, 3 litres)
  • +£50 per individually boxed Imperial (8 bottles equivalent, 6 litres) for Salmanazars, Balthazars, Nebuchadnezzars and Melchiors please enquire for availability and price.

Storage Options:

Wines bought en primeur won't arrive in the UK until 2023. If you do not wish to take home delivery at that point, you may wish to consider where you would like the wines shipped. Lea & Sandeman offers duty paid and in bond storage through a dedicated storage company called Elephant Storage. For more details on the terms and fees associated with storage please go to our Storage Homepage or contact our private client team for more information.