2005 d'Arenberg "The Dead Arm" Shiraz McLaren Vale South Australia
Robert Parker's Wine Advocate
D’Arenberg’s most famous wine is its flagship, The Dead Arm Shiraz. The 2005 The Dead Arm Shiraz is sourced from ancient head-pruned vines. It was aged for 22 months in a mix of new and used French and American oak. It is opaque purple/black with an expansive perfume of toast, smoke, spice box, mineral, pencil lead, tar, licorice, blueberry, and blackberry. Full-bodied, opulent, and super-concentrated, this structured, lengthy wine will benefit from 3-5 years of cellaring and drink well through 2025. (JM)
Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar
Inky violet. Vibrant, perfumed nose melds blackberry, cassis, kirsch, licorice and dried flowers. On the palate, this shiraz shows an intriguing mix of sweet dark fruit flavors and firmer earth and mineral notes, with big but supple tannins contributing structure. The palate-staining finish features notes of bitter cherry, cured tobacco and high-octane chocolate. Nothing obvious here.
The Dead Arm frequently seems to have a tough edge to it, packing in plenty of intensity but not being particularly lush or inviting. The 2005 is driven by powerful blackberry and blueberry fruit, finishing on notes of pepper and spice. Give it 3–4 years to soften.