|Subregion||France > Bordeaux > Right Bank > St Emilion|
Cheval Blanc's second label is used for fruit not considered up to the quality level required for the grand vin but still of a high standard. It is not produced every year as every plot of Cheval Blanc has the potential to make grand vin. There is now a white wine also produced (Le Petit Cheval Blanc) but this is not sold en primeur.
Representing 13% of the estate's production (a further 18% was sold off in bulk), the 2021 Le Petit Cheval exhibits aromas of cherries, sweet berries, loamy soil, tobacco leaf and spices. Medium to full-bodied, lively and nicely concentrated, with powdery tannins and a saline finish, it's a blend of 60% Merlot, 33% Cabernet Sauvignon and 7% Cabernet Franc.
The 2021 Le Petit Cheval, which, according to Pierre Lurton, contains more Cabernet Sauvignon in the blend, has attractive iris flower and incense aromas on the nose, along with plenty of dark berry fruit and just a touch of crushed stone. The palate is medium-bodied with sappy black fruit on the entry, that Cabernet imparting a Médoc-like structure, and a strict, saline finish. I can see this aging well in bottle while waiting for the Grand Vin to reach its drinking plateau.
The 2021 has 60% Merlot with fully 33% Cabernet Sauvignon that adds real bite, and 7% Cabernet Franc. Petit Cheval comprises 13% of the total harvest of Cheval Blanc in 2021 - 69% is in the Grand Vin with the remainder sold off in bulk. Bright ruby-purple colour. Very floral, full of Cabernet fruit. Deep and rich cassis, thanks to the high level of Cabernet Sauvignon dropped from the Grand Vin into this blend. Linear and tight with telltale Cabernet tannins that grip the finish. This is full of tension, acidity and salinity. Pure and nervous with fresh acidity on the finish.
This is a very structured Petit Cheval, because of the higher than normal cabernet sauvignon in the blend. It seems more like Pauillac, with blackcurrants and chewy yet polished and intense tannins. It needs time. 60% merlot, 33% cabernet sauvignon and 7% cabernet franc.
The 2021 Le Petit Cheval is a blend of 60% Merlot, 33% Cabernet Sauvignon, and 7% Cabernet Franc. It needs a little swirling to unlock notes of black cherries, redcurrant, and mulberries, plus hints of cedar, clove oil, and dusty soil. Medium-bodied, the palate is elegant and refreshing, with lovely harmony thanks to soft, delicately played tannins, finishing with compelling baking spices notes.
60% Merlot, 33% Cabernet Sauvignon, 7% Cabernet Franc. 13% of production. Cask sample.
Dark-fruit aroma. Long and linear on the palate, the Cabernet Sauvignon marking the blend (first time this much in Petit Cheval). Crunchy fruit with a firm grain of tannin. Structure for a bit of age. (JL) 13%
Drink 2027 – 2036