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Cheval Blanc 2011

Subregion France > Bordeaux > Right Bank > St Emilion
Grape VarietyCabernet Franc/Merlot

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Tasting Notes

An underrated vintage, the 2011 Cheval Blanc is evolving brilliantly. Wafting from the glass with aromas of smoky cassis, blackberries, loamy soil, tobacco leaf, bitter chocolate, mint and violets, it's full-bodied, velvety and multidimensional, with a layered core of fruit, rich and powdery structuring tannin and a long, resonant finish. While the 2009 and 2010 are more powerful and unctuous, readers who prize Cheval Blanc for its extraordinary complexity and unique perfume might well prefer the 2011, as it is a wine that could come from nowhere else. Drink 2021-2050.

William Kelley, RobertParker.com (Cellar 33), August 2022

The 2011 Cheval Blanc is one of the more plump, opulent and sexy Cheval Blancs made over recent vintages, and its forwardness, lusciousness and complexity seemingly suggest this wine is on a fast evolutionary track. The wine exhibits a dense ruby/purple/plum color, a medium to full-bodied opulence, a sumptuous mid-palate (atypical for the vintage), and a lush, heady finish. It is a super, complex, evolved Cheval Blanc that can be drunk now or cellared for 15+ years. Bravo!

Robert Parker, Wine Advocate (212), May 2014

This is very concentrated for the vintage with lots of blueberry character and new wood. It's full-bodied, with velvety tannins and a fruity finish. This is a little full-throttle, with loads of fruit, but it will come together nicely with bottle age. Better than the 2010. Try in 2017.

James Suckling, JamesSuckling.com, February 2014

The 2011 Cheval Blanc has a deep garnet-brick color. The nose is redolent of tar, fertile loam, licorice, and prunes, giving way to a core of fruitcake, new leather, and black truffles. The palate is full-bodied, rich, and concentrated with earthy nuances coming through on the long finish.

Lisa Perrotti-Brown MW, The Wine Independent, September 2023

Maybe it's partly to do with the shiny, new, hi-tech cellar at his disposal, but Pierre Lurton has crafted one of the wines of the vintage in 2011. A little closed at the moment, but with attractive clove and orange peel on the nose, svelte tannins, sweet, classy oak and a spicy, Cabernet Franc-influenced finish. The freshness of the Cabernet Franc (and its comparative drought resistance) is crucial here. 15+ years.

Tim Atkin MW, timatkin.com, April 2012

A beautiful, understated wine with great depth and intensity. Pure and fragrant with cashmere tannins and great length and line. A resounding success for the first vintage in the new winery. Remains true to style. Drink 2018-2040

James Lawther MW, Decanter.com, April 2012
Read more tasting notes...

Somewhat reminiscent of their brilliant 1998, the 2011 Cheval Blanc has turned out to be a top-notch success. Its deep garnet/plum/purple color is followed by hints of blueberry confiture intermixed with raspberries, mocha, damp forest and a hint of mint. Exhibiting a velvety, opulent texture along with considerable class and flesh as well as sweet tannin, this flavorful, forward 2011 should drink beautifully for two decades or more. The harvest at this estate lasted from September 6 through October 1 (for the Cabernet Franc).

Robert Parker, Wine Advocate (200), April 2012

The Cheval Blanc is a blend of 52% Cabernet Franc and 48% Merlot picked from 6th September finishing on 2nd October. The bouquet is reticent at first and so I allow the sample to warm a little in the glass over five minutes. It unfurls nicely to offer a classic Cheval Blanc nose with the Cabernet Franc exhibiting those floral aromas, more dried rose petal than say violets. It is a slightly aloof nose, not one that comes running to you like the 2009 or 2010. The palate is medium-bodied with fine, slightly chalky tannins. It is well balanced with a fine tannic backbone, imbued with a sense of symmetry that Cheval Blanc has been honing in recent vintages. It displays fine minerality, remaining strict and linear towards the finish, although this may flesh out a little during maturation. A comparatively foursquare Cheval Blanc, one that will repay considerable ageing. Tasted April 2012.

Neal Martin, RobertParker.com, April 2012

A beautiful nose of ripe black fruits such blackberries, as well as cocoa, black truffle and mint. Full body with a solid core of very refined tannins that lasts for minutes. Very refined texture, especially for the vintage. 57% cabernet franc and 43% merlot. Try after seven to eight years.

James Suckling, JamesSuckling.com, January 2014

A really beautiful wine with super silky tannins with chocolate, spice, berries and spices. Full body, with super polished tannins and a long, long finish. The first wine from the new winery of Cheval. Very precise. Very polished. Cabernet Franc gives the quality.

James Suckling, JamesSuckling.com, April 2012

Medium to deep garnet in color, the 2011 Cheval Blanc features a nose of warm mulberries, preserved plums and figs with suggestions of dried herbs, dusty soil and underbrush plus a touch of Sichuan pepper. Medium to full-bodied, taut and muscular in the mouth, it has a solid frame of chewy tannins supporting the restrained fruit and a long earth and Provence herbs-layered finish. Drink Date 2018 - 2033

Lisa Perrotti-Brown MW, Wine Advocate (238), August 2018
Please note that these tasting notes/scores are not intended to be exhaustive and in some cases they may not be the most recently published figures. However, we always do our best to add latest scores and reviews when these come to our attention. We advise customers who wish to purchase wines based simply on critical reviews to carry out further research into the latest reports.