2010 Chateau Cheval Blanc (Case of Twelve OWC)

Year: 2010
Appellation: Saint-Emilion
Country: France
Wine Spectator: 98
Wine Advocate: 100
Vinous Media: 95-98
Wine Enthusiast: 96-98
Jeff Leve: 96-98
James Suckling: 100
Red Wine
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"This is stone-cold shut down right now, but why worry? You'll want to wait at least a decade before breaching a bottle as massively endowed as this, with loads of loamy bass notes thumping along underneath a riveting track of licorice snap, pastis-steeped black currant fruit, maduro tobacco and espresso. And then there's an echo of petrichor at the very end that hints at the aromatic fireworks to come with cellaring. Should compete for wine of the vintage. Best from 2020 through 2040." (WS)

"The 2010 is one of the most impressive two-year-old Cheval Blancs I have tasted in 34 years in this profession. The final blend of 54% Cabernet Franc and 46% Merlot has the tell-tale berry/floral nose with subtle hints of menthol, blueberry, raspberry and flowers in addition to some forest floor and a delicate touch of lead pencil shavings. The wine exhibits more structure and density than it did from barrel, and it was already remarkable then. The foresty/floral notes seem to linger and linger in this surprisingly full-bodied, powerful Cheval Blanc, yet it possesses a very healthy pH that should ensure enormous longevity. Dense purple in color, and a bigger, richer wine than usual, this is one Cheval Blanc that will probably need a decade of cellaring. I like the description from the estate’s administrator, Pierre Lurton, who said it tasted like “liquid cashmere,” a perfect expression, despite the wine’s structure and intensity. This is another 50-year wine from this amazingly structured, rich vintage." (WA)

"(a 56/44 blend of cabernet franc and merlot; 3.8 pH; 84 IPT; 14.5% alcohol; a roughly 60% selection for the grand vin Deep ruby-purple. Brooding nose opens slowly with air to reveal concentrated, multifaceted aromas of cassis, violet, coffee, minerals and white pepper. Very rich and dense on entry, displaying concentrated flavors of black fruits, sweet spices and cocoa, with a complicating violet note. The finish is very long and lightly saline. This big, rich Cheval Blanc offers great palate presence and a wonderfully layered texture." (IWC)

"96-98. Beautifully perfumed wine, with aromas of violets, the fruit full of ripe spice to put along with the great berry fruits. Tannins at the end are tough, smoky. — R.V. (6/25/2011)" (WE)

"2010 Cheval Blanc Produced from a higher percentage of Cabernet Franc than usual, 56% Cabernet Franc, with the remaining 34% percent relegated to Merlot; that assemblage is similar to what is planted in the vineyards today. The Bordeaux wine reached 14.5% alcohol with a 3.75 pH, allowing for a rich, ripe wine that is also alcoholic and fresh. Placing your nose into this wine reminds you of walking into a flower shop. The aromatics are further complicated with scents of stone, oak, truffle, caramel and black cherry. Pairing delicacy with power, this is an elegant, deep, Bordeaux wine of finesse, purity and refinement. Part of the reason for this St. Emilion wines success is the long and exacting time spent harvesting the fruit. The estate took three weeks to conclude picking. Previously, they finished the harvest in two weeks." (JL)

"The aroma in this wine is crazy with flowers, mushroom, forest floor, and fruit. It seems like I am walking through a row of the vines in Cheval Blanc when I have my nose in the glass. It's full-bodied, with fabulous layers of ultra-fine tannins and milk chocolate, raspberries, and a phenomenal finish. Truly one of the greatest Chevals ever. Better than 2009. Try in 2020." (JS)