Sweet plummy fruit shows terrific finesse from this regal right bank estate. The palate was long, nervous, and full of complex flavours that will unfold over the coming years. Extremely impressive.
We think that Cheval Blanc is the best St Emilion of 2005. It is fleshy, hedonistic, yet not overtly modern. It is superbly balanced. Each concentrated, expressive drop flows smoothly from start to its very long finish. Superfine tannins. Fully integrated oak. It is simply mindblowing. Drink 2015 - 2035+.
The 2005 from Cheval Blanc is a quintessentially elegant, beautiful, deep bluish/ruby-colored wine from St.-Emilion, with raspberry, blueberry, and floral notes, impressive density, great precision, freshness and purity. Full-bodied, but extremely light on its feet, I don’t mean to gush, but it is super-intense, rich and just so meticulously crafted! This is another fabulous wine and a perfect expression for this vintage. It is difficult to forget the gorgeous blueberry and raspberry fruit, full body, sweet tannin, a multi-layered texture, and purity and palate presence of this stunning wine. Drink it over the next 20 years. P.S. In 2005, this was 50% Cabernet Franc and 50% Merlot. Drink 2015-2035
The dense ruby/purple-hued 2005 Cheval Blanc's ethereal bouquet of menthol, coffee, wet stones,black cherries, blackberries, and hints of graphite and spice soars from the glass. An equal part blend of Cabernet Franc and Merlot, it is medium to full-bodied with a gorgeous texture in addition to high tannins that glide over the palate with no angularity or astringency. While it does not quite reach the perfection of the 2000, it should rival the profound 1998 and 1990. This is not a Cheval Blanc for near-term drinking as it demands at least a decade's worth of cellaring.Anticipated maturity: 2017-2035.
This spectacular blend of nearly equal parts Cabernet Franc and Merlot has put on weight over the last year (as most top Chevals tend to do). The color is an inky/blue/ruby/purple, and the wine reveals an extraordinary aromatic profile of subtle mocha, licorice, pain grille, and abundant red, blue, and black fruits. As usual, there is an underlying hint of menthol, or is it forest floor? A classic, quintessential medium-bodied Cheval Blanc boasting a stunning texture and high tannin, but neither aggressiveness nor angularity, the 2005 appears capable of rivaling the extraordinary 2000 and 1998. However, the production of 95,000 bottles is relatively small. It requires 6-8 years of bottle age, and it should evolve effortlessly for 35+ years. Drink 2013-2042.
A prodigious Cheval Blanc that should challenge the 2000 and 1998 as the finest Cheval since the 1990, the 2005's final blend consisted of 55% Cabernet Franc and 45% Merlot. The Merlot harvest began on September 15th and lasted until the Cabernet Franc was finished around October 6th. Administrator Pierre Lurton told me, "I prefer to pick the Merlot a little early, and the Cabernet Franc a little late." The deep ruby/purple-colored 2005 reveals an extraordinary projected, surreal bouquet of menthol, red, blue, and black fruits, and hints of mocha, licorice, and sweet oak. This opulent, tremendously concentrated Cheval Blanc possesses undeniable finesse, elegance, and freshness as well as a vibrant, nuanced, delineated personality. Anticipated maturity: 2014-2030+.
Very dark and lustrous. Much more obviously Cabernet Franc than the Petit Cheval - quite rigorous and yet still ripe though with some really aromatic leafiness - in the appetising rather than underripe spectrum. Even a hint of black pepper. Extremely broad and ripe and sumptuous. Full, sweet yet with lovely lift and lustrousness - it does seem less earthbound than some recent vintages. Certainly very, very ripe. The finest tannins - like the threads in a silk shawl. A lovely skein of flavours. So very, very neat and confident. Great freshness! Very reminiscent of older classic Cheval vintages - 1983 with a bit more flesh? Drink 2015-35.
I am not sure what to say about the nose. It's so complex, with minerals, berries, wet earth and light vanilla. Turns to licorice and mint. Full-bodied, with amazing tannins and a long, long finish. This is so refined and long. Pure silk.
Several years ago, 10 of the world's top wine specialists were asked if they could own a wine estate, which one would it be. At least 5 of them said Château Cheval Blanc. Indeed, this château is like no other. Wonderfully silky and smooth yet powerful, Cheval Blanc is often approachable when young yet has the capacity to age for many years. Its unusually high proportion of Cabernet Franc (usually 50% or more) accompanied by Merlot has undoubtedly contributed to its allure.
South of Pomerol lies the medieval, perched village of St Emilion. Surrounding St Emilion are vines that produce round, rich and often hedonistic wines. Despite a myriad of soil types, two main ones dominate - the gravelly, limestone slopes that delve down to the valley from the plateau and the valley itself which is comprised of limestone, gravel, clay and sand. Despite St Emilion's popularity today, it was not until the 1980s to early 1990s that attention was brought to this region. Robert Parker, the famous wine critic, began reviewing their Merlot-dominated wines and giving them hefty scores. The rest is history as they say. Similar to the Médoc, there is a classification system in place which dates from 1955 and outlines several levels of quality. These include its regional appellation of St Emilion, St Emilion Grand Cru, St Emilion Grand Cru Classé and St Emilion Premier Grand Cru Classé, which is further divided into "A" (Ausone and Cheval Blanc) and "B" (including Angélus, Canon, Figeac and a handful of others). To ensure better accuracy, the classification is redone every 10 years enabling certain châteaux to be upgraded or downgraded depending on on the quality of their more recent vintages.