Possibly the finest second wine Cheval Blanc has yet produced, the 2009 Le Petit Cheval is a blend of 35% Merlot and 65% Cabernet Franc. It exhibits more caramelized notes than the grand vin along with a luscious, open-knit, subtle herbaceous component. This fleshy, sexy 2009 is ideal for drinking over the next decade.
Delivers plum and spices on the nose, with hints of coffee and black licorice. Full-bodied, offering a wonderful silky texture and a long, long finish. So inviting and delicious already.
65% Cabernet Franc, 35% Merlot. Mild, low-key, soft nose. A little inky and awkward at the moment. Chewy finish not integrated with the fruit. A bit of alcohol on the end. This does rather taste like offcuts (15% only, apparently) rather than a wine in its own right. Awkward acidity on the end too. Date tasted 30 March 2010. Drink 2015-2025.
The second wine of Chateau Cheval Blanc represents 15% of the Chateau's production in 2009 with a larger amount (20%) being relegated to a third wine. This is 65% Cabernet Franc and 35% Merlot. Ripe and creamy with a lovely sweetness of blueberry fruit, roundness and polish. Very luscious and full of fruit. Fresh, with a touch of mint. Should be drinkable in its youth. A charmer.
The nose is fleshed out by rich black cherry lovely and sweet. On the palate the fruit is rich, ripe with a fleshy sweetness but underneath is freshness red cherry and raspberry that lifts the flavours and brightens the finish. Drink 2018-2035.
The second wine of Cheval Blanc benefited from a couple of parcels of Cabernet Franc that didn't make it into the grand vin, so it's a correspondingly supple, aromatic wine. Brambly, black fruit-scented with a touch of greenness adding acidity and bite. Creamy mid-palate with well-handled oak. Well worth buying if you can't get hold of (let alone afford) Cheval Blanc. 10+ years
Full-bodied (14.2°) but amazingly fresh and balanced (65% Cabernet Franc). Fragrant, focused and satisfying. Fine, filigree tannins. Drink 2015-2025.
The 2009 Le Petit Cheval is the best second wine I have ever tasted from this estate. Composed of two-thirds Merlot and one-third Cabernet Franc, it is better than most vintages of the grand vin from the sixties and seventies. Notes of chocolate, black cherries, herbs, and spice emerge from this full-bodied, thick, juicy wine. Enjoy it over the next 10+ years. (Tasted once.) Drink 2010-2020.
Robert Parker added an asterisk to this wine score to signify that it is a wine he considers has the finest potential of all the offerings he has ever tasted from this estate in nearly 32 years of barrel tasting samples in Bordeaux.
A blend of 65% Cabernet Franc and 35% Merlot, the bouquet is a little more generous than in previous years, with pure blackberry, blueberry, a touch of damson and limestone. Good definition. The palate is structured on the entry, that Cabernet Franc really defining the wine, very fine tannins though and lovely balance. Very pure and linear at the moment, but it skips along towards the finish without a care in the world. Tasted March 2010.