Château d'Armailhac

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A bottle of 2005 Château d'Armailhac.

Château d'Armailhac, previously named Château Mouton-d'Armailhacq (historical name from inception, 1750–1955), Château Mouton-Baron Philippe, Mouton Baronne and Château Mouton-Baronne-Philippe (1979–1988), is a winery in the Pauillac appellation of the Bordeaux region of France. The wine produced here was classified as one of eighteen Cinquièmes Crus (Fifth Growths) in the Bordeaux Wine Official Classification of 1855.[1]

History[edit]

In 1680, a local register notes the existence of two brothers, Dominique and Guilhem Armailhacq, who own parcels of land in Pauillac.

In 1750, another register mentions a certain Dominique Armailhac who has "planted in vines" the familiy Medoc estate. The vine covered 15 to 16 hectares (37-39 acres).

In the late century , the vineyard, generally called Mouton d'Armailhac spans some 52 hectares (128 acres) between Brane-Mouton (now known as Chateau Mouton Rothschild) in the north and Pibran in the south.

In 1831, the quality of Chateau Mouton d'Armailhacq greatly improves to the extent that its wines sell for twice as much as neighbouring wines, even though the latter are more highly reputed. This is due to the use of techniques such as topping-up, running-off, barrel disinfection and fining.

In 1844, the pursuit of quality cripples the Chateau with debts. The owner, Madame Darmailhacq, sells Les Carruades du Pouyalet to Lafite to restore the estate's finances.

In 1855, Château Mouton d'Armailhacq is classified as a First Growth in the famous classification drawn up by Bordeaux wine brokers.

Comte Adrien de Ferrand, "son-in-law of Armailhacq" acquires the estate and its 70-hectares (173 acres) vineyard.

The Comte de Ferrand creates a company, the Société Anonyme du Domaine de Mouton d'Armailhacq in 1931. The young Baron Philippe de Rothschild becomes a minority shareholder then, in 1933, acquires all the shares in return for a life annuity for the Comte de Ferrand. A year latter, on the latter's death ; Baron Philippe de Rothschild becomes the effective owner of Mouton d'Armailhac including the Société Vinicole de Pauillac, forerunner of what is now Baron Philippe de Rothschild S.A..

A Fifth Growth of acknowledge quality, Mouton d'Armailhacq is renamed Mouton Baron Philippe in 1956 the Mouton Baronne Philippe until the vintage 1988. In 1988, Baroness Philippine de Rothschild decides to restore its original identity to Mouton d'Armailhacq, giving it the name of Château d'Armailhac.

From then, the label shows the reproduction of a figurine (Autumn II) located in the Museum of Wine in Art at Château Mouton Rothschild.

The terroir[edit]

The Chateau has about 172 acres (70 hectares) planted with Cabernet Sauvignon (56%), Merlot (32%), Cabernet Franc (10%), and Petit Verdot (2%). Purchased by Baron Philippe de Rothschild in 1934, the estate is currently owned by the Mouton Rothschild branch of the Rothschild family.[2]

The average age of the vineyard is 46 years but nearly 20% of the total surface area dates back to 1890.

Wines[edit]

Château d'Armailhac is an elegant wine typical of the Medac appellation. It combines modern oenology and respect for the tradition to offer a classic and enchanting vintage.

References[edit]

  1. ^ MacNeil, Karen (2001). The Wine Bible. Workman Publishing. p. 885. ISBN 1-56305-434-5. 
  2. ^ J. Suckling, "50 Best Bordeaux under $50", Wine Spectator Magazine, p.69, March 31, 2007

External links[edit]

Detail of a label of then named Château Mouton d'Armailhacq Philippe de Rothschild of the 1953 vintage

Coordinates: 45°12′40″N 0°46′12″W / 45.2111°N 0.7700°W / 45.2111; -0.7700