2005 Chateau Cheval Blanc Saint-Emilion Premier Grand Cru Classe A

2005 Chateau Cheval Blanc Saint-Emilion Premier Grand Cru Classe A

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A past Wine Access story about 2005 Chateau Cheval Blanc Saint-Emilion Premier Grand Cru Classe A

A Perfect Cheval Blanc

Today, we have a Bordeaux rarity of sheer perfection.

Château Cheval Blanc is the exemplar of Right Bank Bordeaux, and we are offering this mint condition, perfectly-aged 2005 Château Cheval Blanc direct from the cellars of this Saint-Émilion Premier Grand Cru Classé A estate. Combining 51% Merlot with 49% Cabernet Franc, it hails from what Robert Parker rates as the greatest Saint-Émilion vintage ever, topped off by dual 100-point scores from Parker and Vinous. Just 12 bottles.

Walking the hallowed terroir of Premier Grand Cru Classé “A” Château Cheval Blanc and witnessing manager Pierre Lurton’s unrelenting commitment to perfection is awe-inspiring. The winery is lined with graceful custom-made vats, one for each vineyard block. The barrel cellar is not only exquisite, but small, compared to the First Growths of Pauillac and Margaux—Cheval Blanc produces a mere 6,000 cases of grand vin, compared to up to 17,500 cases of Château Lafite. Considering Cheval Blanc’s worldwide reputation it comes as a surprise to know how little Cheval Blanc there actually is to go around.

The 2005 Cheval Blanc’s Merlot and Cabernet Franc grapes hail from three main soils on the Cheval Blanc property: fine-textured claysimilar to Petrusand both fine and large gravel. There isn't much gravel in Saint-Émilion, a soil more common in the Left Bank. It is the reason for the higher portion of Cabernet Franc than other Saint-Émilion properties. Gravel retains more heat, allowing Cabernet Franc to ripen reliably every year. Most of the rest of the appellation sits on limestone, clay, or sandy loam.

So, while the precious soils at Cheval Blanc don’t vary from year to year—the vintages do. And 2005 was, according to the 99 points from Robert Parker, the finest growing season ever in Saint-Émilion. It was much drier and much warmer than normal, and those conditions produced a healthy crop of small, concentrated, and beautifully balanced berries.

The result, as few would argue, is one of the greatest Cheval Blancs of all time—one of only five vintages to attain perfection, according to Robert Parker. If any wine has delivered on the lofty promise of a perfect vintage, this is the one.

Wine Spectator stated in 2017 that the 2005 Saint-Émilions are “starting to awaken,” and Cheval Blanc’s perfect dual 100-point scores from two of the world’s leading critics are taking on new meaning. Both hung their perfect scores on the 2005 Cheval Blanc after tasting it in 2015: Galloni called it “utterly mesmerizing,” and Parker said, “I don’t mean to gush, but it is super-intense, rich and just so meticulously crafted.” In other words, this wine represents the best of the Right Bank, the greatest vintage ever, and is hitting its stride right now.

This offer is for those who might have missed their chance when the 2005s were first hitting the market, and for those who know that there is no better linchpin for your cellar than marquee Bordeaux from a stellar vintage. We have but one case of this beauty.

100 Points Wine Advocate, 2007
97 Points Wine Spectator
96 Points Wine Advocate, 2008
93 Points Vinous Media

About Chateau Cheval Blanc

About Chateau Cheval Blanc

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