x
  • Country ranking ?

    656
  • Producer ranking ?

    12
  • Decanting time

    2h
  • When to drink

    now to 2030
  • Food Pairing

    Skirt Steak with Pomegranate Sauce

The Story

Whether by design or by pure chance, there are in the world exceptional places. Cheval Blanc is one of these. Combining a unique soil with a symbiotic mix of grape varieties, Cabernet Franc and Merlot, Cheval Blanc produces a wine, which has the rare quality of being good at any age. It is without doubt one of the most consistent wines in the world. Cheval Blanc's unique identity is due to its varied soils, early-ripening microclimate, the percentage of Cabernet Franc in the vineyard, and the close proximity of the finest wines of Pomerol.

Château Cheval Blanc has the rare ability to be good at whatever age. It is enjoyable young or as much as a century old in certain vintages. However, a great wine only reveals its full potential and all its subtle nuances after several years in bottle. It takes time to show its true colours and before reaching its peak. Every vintage of Cheval Blanc is made according to the traditional philosophy that great wine needs to age.
It should nevertheless be said that wines with ageing potential go through several periods, and that each one has its own type of attractiveness. This is all part of Château Cheval Blanc's fascinating complexity. Three different bottles of Cheval Blanc from the same vintage drunk at five, twenty, and forty years of age will each show a different facet of the same wine, variations on the same lovely theme. A bottle of fine wine meant to age is like a library of flavours that develop throughout its existence.
Wine is a "cultural" beverage that is very much alive and develops countless nuances over time. That is why this long waiting period needs to be respected. It is crucial to the wine's evolution, so that it can deliver its very best.

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Vintage 1949

FEATURES OF THE VINTAGE
1949 was marked by severe drought conditions. This dry weather concentrated the grapes, enabling them to produce remarkable wine, the last of the decade's trio of great vintages. Possessing a remarkable tannic structure and enormous aromatic complexity, 1949 can be considered the epitome of Cheval Blanc's true essence compared to the atypical 1947 and 1948

 

1949 IS THE LAST OF THE THREE GREAT VINTAGES
OF THE FORTIES. THIS IS A WINE WITH A LARGE
AROMATIC COMPLEXITY.

This year is an ecological disaster: fire devours the Landes and in August reaches the gates of Bordeaux: 5500 pine acres are destroyed, dozens of deaths, drought rages during this summer of 1949. Grape picking takes place from September 26th till October 9th. Although the grapes are small and a yield of 24 hl/ha, the vintage is exceptional with Cabernet Franc prevailing, despite the loss of all its leaves during drought. 12°4 alcohol for this wine, perfect all its lifetime.

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Latest Pro-tasting notes

25 tasting notes

Tasting note

color

Full, Brick red and Pale

ending

Long, Spicy and Round

flavors

Blackcurrant, Plum, Mineral, Blackberry, Blueberry and Vanilla

nose

Intense, Opulent, Generous and Refined

recommend

Yes

taste

Average in Acidity, Balanced, Concentrated, Complex, Mature, Full-bodied, Ripe, Rich, Elegant and Medium-Sweet

Verdict

Impressive and Excellent

Written Notes

The bar was set quite highly right away with a 1949 Cheval Blanc. While it was a Calvet Negociant bottling, I don’t recall a Chateau-bottling that was ever considerably better. It needed a minute to blow off some old, pent-up steam, but there was deep fruit inside with some wheat thin borders. Dark and rich, this was a classic Cheval with a sturdy, thick finish that came across youthfully (96).
  • 96p
Here is the epitome of the Cheval Blanc style. The nose is a fragrant medley of ripe fruit, licorice, raspberries, a little smokiness, and floral notes. It is fairly dense and powerful as it opens, and the high percentage of Cabernet Franc with which it was made is evident. It is sweet yet undeniably elegant, red cherries, plums and herbs past the mid palate. The smooth tannins are charming, and the lively yet balanced acidity gives it great lift. The finish, usually exceptional, was just a little dry on this showing, though it didn’t undermine the lovely overall symphony between fruit, acid and tannin. Asian spices and coffee lap at the palate in the aftermath. Overall, a wine of remarkable intensity that also has an ethereal grace that almost reminds you in that aspect of great Lafite. It is a signature Cheval Blanc of great breeding and elegance. 97 Points+
  • 97p
Some great wines come quite unexepctedly. A friend with an excellent received this bottle as a gift of his wife in 1985 for a successully pass of an exam. On the second day of 2016 he intended to open this special botte and it was a pleasure to be part of the small tasting group, two couples only. Garnet red colour with a hint brick red though very youthful appearance. The nose is opulent, displaying hints of vanilla and graphite, elegant ethereal notes reminscent of black truffles, hints of dried fruits, prunes and dark berries, smoked bacon in the background. With a longer oxygention the aroma is reminiscent of roasted chestnuts. The wine shows a perfect maturity with traces of the typical Cabernet-Franc freshness. On the palate velvety tannins, an aroma reminiscent of truffles and discreet undergrowth flavour in the background. The taste is intriguing, well balanced and multilayered with a wonderful hint of sweetness, the freshness of a great classic wine and great length.
  • 98p

Information

Origin

Saint-Émilion, Bordeaux

Vintage Quality

Outstanding

Value For Money

Very good

Investment potential

Good

Fake factory

Serious

Highlights

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Wine Moments

Here you can see wine moments from tastingbook users. or to see wine moments from your world.

97p
 Omar Khan, Wine Writer (United States)  tasted  Cheval Blanc 1949  ( Château Cheval Blanc )

"Here is the epitome of the Cheval Blanc style. The nose is a fragrant medley of ripe fruit, licorice, raspberries, a little smokiness, and floral notes. It is fairly dense and powerful as it opens, and the high percentage of Cabernet Franc with which it was made is evident. It is sweet yet undeniably elegant, red cherries, plums and herbs past the mid palate. The smooth tannins are charming, and the lively yet balanced acidity gives it great lift. The finish, usually exceptional, was just a little dry on this showing, though it didn’t undermine the lovely overall symphony between fruit, acid and tannin. Asian spices and coffee lap at the palate in the aftermath. Overall, a wine of remarkable intensity that also has an ethereal grace that almost reminds you in that aspect of great Lafite. It is a signature Cheval Blanc of great breeding and elegance. 97 Points+"

1y 27d ago

98p
 Markus Del Monego MW / Best Sommelier in the World 1998, MW (Germany)  tasted  Cheval Blanc 1949  ( Château Cheval Blanc )

"Some great wines come quite unexepctedly. A friend with an excellent received this bottle as a gift of his wife in 1985 for a successully pass of an exam. On the second day of 2016 he intended to open this special botte and it was a pleasure to be part of the small tasting group, two couples only.

Garnet red colour with a hint brick red though very youthful appearance. The nose is opulent, displaying hints of vanilla and graphite, elegant ethereal notes reminscent of black truffles, hints of dried fruits, prunes and dark berries, smoked bacon in the background. With a longer oxygention the aroma is reminiscent of roasted chestnuts. The wine shows a perfect maturity with traces of the typical Cabernet-Franc freshness. On the palate velvety tannins, an aroma reminiscent of truffles and discreet undergrowth flavour in the background. The taste is intriguing, well balanced and multilayered with a wonderful hint of sweetness, the freshness of a great classic wine and great length. "

1y 7m ago

96p
 John Kapon / CEO / Ackerr Merrall & Condit, Pro (United States)  tasted  Cheval Blanc 1949  ( Château Cheval Blanc )

"The bar was set quite highly right away with a 1949 Cheval Blanc. While it was a Calvet Negociant bottling, I don’t recall a Chateau-bottling that was ever considerably better. It needed a minute to blow off some old, pent-up steam, but there was deep fruit inside with some wheat thin borders. Dark and rich, this was a classic Cheval with a sturdy, thick finish that came across youthfully (96). "

4y 6m ago

98p
 Christer Byklum / Leading Scandinavian wine blogger, Wine Writer (Norway)  tasted  Cheval Blanc 1949  ( Château Cheval Blanc )

"Vandermeulen bottle, half rotten, old cork stating Vandermeulen Ostende. Deep ruby, orange rim. Dusty nose first, quickly blowing over to plums, figs, slightly of VA, cassis and perfumed. Fresh acidity, high even, mouthwatering, full bodied. Ripe tannins, intense, fragrant and lifted, savory, very long"

4y 7m ago

99p
 Jan-Erik Paulson, Wine Writer (Germany)  tasted  Cheval Blanc 1949  ( Château Cheval Blanc )

"Gorgeour 1959 La Mission Haut-Brion. First, I would like to correct a common misconception: Château La Mission Haut-Brion is not now, nor has it ever been, the number two wine from Château Haut-Brion; in fact, the two estates were never even under the same ownership until the Dillons acquired it in 1983.The 1959 is not far behind the 1961 in quality. It has provided enjoyment for a long time and will continue to do so for a good many years."

4y 9m ago

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