The 2006 Château Cheval Blanc acquitted itself very well. Showing a promisingly youthful dark plum/ruby color, plenty of licorice, black raspberry and black currant fruit as well as hints of smoke and forest floor, it is medium to full-bodied, rich and, to me, representative of a sleeper of the vintage. Drink it over the next 20 to 25 years.
|Score: 95||Robert Parker, Hedonists Gazette, March 2017|
The brilliant 2006 Cheval Blanc performed better from bottle than from barrel. A blend of equal parts Cabernet Franc and Merlot grown in a superb vineyard site facing La Conseillante and l'Evangile at the very edge of the sandy, gravelly soils of St.-Emilion, it boasts a dense ruby/purple color as well as a sweet perfume of menthol, charcoal, boysenberries, black currants, and hints of cocoa and caramel. Lush, textured, and opulent with superb purity, medium to full body, savory flavors, and sweet, sexy tannins, this stunning Cheval Blanc may be even better than the 2005. Anticipated maturity: 2012-2030.
|Score: 95||Robert Parker, Wine Advocate (181), February 2009|
Only 60% of the harvest was utilized in this marvelous blend of 55% Merlot and 45% Cabernet Franc. As always, the 2006 Cheval Blanc is made in a lighter, more elegant style based on finesse, purity, and beautiful nuances. A deep ruby/purple color is accompanied by scents of crushed rocks, menthol, raspberries, cherries, and assorted blue as well as black fruits. An impeccable integration of new oak, medium body, terrific palate penetration and purity, and light tannins suggest it will be drinkable in 2-3 years, but it should put on considerable weight because of its large Cabernet Franc component. While the 2006 may not eclipse the 2005, 2000, or 1998, it is not far off in terms of quality and longevity. Anticipated maturity: 2012-2028.
|Score: 92/95||Robert Parker, Wine Advocate (170), April 2007|
The 2006 Château Cheval Blanc is a blend of 55% Merlot and 45% Cabernet Franc. It has the most floral bouquet of the four Serié A Grand Cru Classé: an explosion of crushed violets and potpourri, hints of leather and cigar box, the Cabernet Franc clearly lending this complexity and character. The palate is medium-bodied with fine tannin. It feels wonderfully structured and comes with an insistent grip that coats the mouth. This is backward and almost surly, but you have to stand back and admire the precision and arching structure on the mineral-rich finish. Top-dog Saint Emilion? That's for sure.
|Score: 97||Neal Martin, RobertParker.com, May 2016|
Tasted at Cheval Blanc. A blend of 55% Merlot and 45% Cabernet Franc, this is an intellectual Cheval Blanc that does not go out of its way to charm, but nonetheless has its virtues. A fine mineral-driven nose with blackberry leaf, wet stones and a touch of dark chocolate - precise and taut. The palate is full-bodied, less fleshy that other vintages I have tasted at this stage, masculine, tannic with ripe red-berried fruits and a touch of pain grillé. Very good length, this has all the components to be a great, rather than iconic Cheval Blanc, but it will need some time in the cellar. Tasted April 2007.
|Score: 93/95||Neal Martin, RobertParker.com, April 2007|
Displays lots of milk chocolate, cedar, berry and cappuccino aromas. Full-bodied, with chewy tannins, this is structured and layered for the vintage. Mouthpuckering. Needs time. This is one of the wines of the vintage. Best after 2015
|Score: 95||James Suckling, Wine Spectator, January 2009|
Very rich, showing lots of blackberry and licorice, with just a hint of wood. Full-bodied, with dense but polished tannins. This is subtle. Very, very pretty and elegant. Silky and long. Almost 95-100.
|Score: 92/94||James Suckling, WineSpectator.com, March 2007|
55% Merlot, 45% Cabernet Franc. Harvest 15–28 September. Average potential alcohol of the Merlot grapes was over 14%. Yields were 30% lower than usual, partly because the berries were very small after the heat from May to July and partly because selection in the vineyard was very strict. 62% of the harvest went into the grand vin.
Very good depth of crimson though pretty weak rim. Reticent nose though obviously more concentrated than the Petit Cheval. Very subtle light whiff of bonfires. Good round supple fruit on the front palate but no great intensity. Tasted straight after Evangile next door it seemed a rather green puny little thing. Definitely not one of Cheval’s most glorious vintages - decidedly inky. Mouthfilling though but no great depth. Some unripe green element underneath.
|Score: 17+||Jancis Robinson MW, JancisRobinson.com, April 2007|
Good deep ruby-red. Captivating nose combines blackberry, menthol, licorice, bitter chocolate, violet and a flinty, iron-like element. Densely packed and very fresh, with superb energy and definition to the complex flavors of cassis, blackberry, licorice, menthol and minerals. A floral element contributes to the impression of vibrancy. This is more impressive than it was at any stage of its elevage, offering surprising chewy richness and sweetness for a brand-new Cheval. Finishes with broad, toothdusting tannins that mount slowly and saturate the palate. This wonderfully smooth wine gained in precision and floral perfume with 24 hours in the recorked bottle and should be at its best roughly between 2015 and 2035.
|Score: 94||Stephen Tanzer, International Wine Cellar, May 2009|
Good full red-ruby. Complex nose melds redcurrant, tobacco, iron, smoke and a floral element. Suave and bright, at once fatter and finer-grained than the 2007, but with perfectly integrated acidity to buffer its voluptuous texture. The broad, mouthcoating finish features very fine tannins and excellent length. This was to have been bottled in April. Estate Manager Pierre Lurton noted that Cheval Blanc typically gets no more than 15 months of elevage
|Score: 92/94||Stephen Tanzer, International Wine Cellar (132), June 2007|
The freshness of the fruit is apparent on the nose. The sweet mix of cassis and mulberry fleshes out the middle and the roundness of the tannins add a velvety touch. Supple and fleshy towards the back yet there is a mineral streak ensuring brightness.
|Score: 91/94||Derek Smedley MW, April 2007|