This is the first release of a special project of Jeremy Renard and the proprietor of Château d’Arsac in Margaux. Under Renard’s guidance, each year a single vineyard parcel from Château d’Arsac is completely controlled by a single, world-renowned winemaker. Michel Rolland launched the project, and he has been followed by other luminaries in the wine world. Rolland had the good fortune to benefit from an excellent vintage, and the result is a 5,000-case lot of sensational wine. The 2005 possesses a forward, voluptuous style, so it will have early appeal, but don’t discount its potential to last 15-20 years. It offers a dense ruby/purple hue along with a smoky perfume of sweet cherries, blackberries, roasted coffee, and a hint of tobacco leaf. There is a seamless integration of acidity, tannin, and wood in this complete, full-bodied wine. The finish lasts for 35-40 seconds. This beauty can be drunk now or cellared for 15-20 years. (RP)
Ubiquitous Michel Rolland was the obvious choice for the first in this series of famous winemakers given the job of making a wine from Ch d'Arsac's grapes. Dark glowing crimson with a bright red rim. Very sweet, almost tarry nose. Quite obvious alcohol on the nose. Sweet, very thick palate entry. I feel as though this wine may call for a knife and fork rather than a glass! Lots of tannin still in evidence (a characteristic of the vintage). This tightens up on the finish which is quite dry and with just a suggestion of the heat of alcohol. This still seems quite youthful and unknit to a British palate. Desperately needs food. I know Michel would disagree, and would hate to read this (though he probably won't), but I can see a relationship with some of his southern hemisphere wines here. 16/20 points. (JR)
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