The House of Arras is a true expression of its origin and maker – a marriage of exceptional cold climate Tasmanian vineyards and uncompromising sparkling winemaking techniques mastered over decades. The Arras Grand Vintage is the fulfilment of a vision to craft world class sparkling wine. Enriched by the complexity of character that follows six years tirage, yet retains all the brilliant freshness and longevity that will continue to improve with age.
A cooler than average year with high rainfall at the start of the growing season. Conditions became favourable over flowering resulting in a solid crop set. The season remained cool and hence elegant flavours and structure persisted through to harvest with an excellent natural acidity evident in the base wines. This season’s wines exhibit finesse and longevity with great potential for release after extended maturation.
Arras has been something of a Tasmanian icon since the label was established back in 1995 and with a wine like this, it is easy to see why. The goal is one of elegance, complexity, depth and a wine that can spend considerable time on its lees and still have a long life ahead of it. Ed Carr and the team are kicking goals, as the youth say, with every release and long may it continue. If you are yet to discover Tasmanian sparkling wines, I would recommend going Chard on this one, but be careful, you may end up making Tasmania your home. Tasted: Aug 20; Alcohol: 12.5%; Price: $109.00; Closure: Cork; Drink: 2020-2030; Rated: 97 Points; Curly Haslam-Coates; The Wine Front
65.9/34.1% chardonnay/pinot noir, aged for 9 years on lees, disgorged Apr '20 the dosage only 2.5g/l. Full straw-yellow hue; layered brioche complexity, powerful drive and length. Australia's answer to Krug. Drink to: NA; Price: $109.00; Date Tasted: Nov 2020; Alcohol: 12.5%; Rating: 97 Points & Special Value Star & Top 100 Wines for 2020; James Halliday Wine Companion
The House of Arras is the granddaddy of Tasmanian sparkling wine, with a list of awards as long as its finish. The vintage wine is always based on chardonnay, for longevity, and the tightness and refinement of the base-wine enables winemaker Ed Carr to give it such a long time ageing on its yeast lees – 10 years. The wine has a youthful mid-yellow hue and very complex nose of toasted bread, roasted nuts, nougat and smoked charcuterie. It’s rich and full in the mouth but retains tautness and finesse. A very rewarding glass of bubbly: multi-layered, interest-packed and long, with a superbly silky mouth-feel. Ageing: ready now and will keep for 5+ years; Alcohol: 12.5%; Rating: 96 Points; Huon Hooke
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