2010 Domaine de Chevalier Rouge, Pessac-Leognan, Bordeaux, France
From one of the top Bordeaux vintages, the Domaine de Chevalier Rouge 2010 was, at the time, one of the very best wines ever made at the estate with the 2015 and 2016 vintages being similarly impressive. However, the 2010 is now entering its adolescent drinking window and for those who enjoy great Bordeaux with a decade under the belt is a great choice for a Christmas Dinner or special occasion wine. It will also evolve beautifully over the coming two decades.
This is one of my all-time favorite wines from Domaine de Chevalier, a silky, rather classic Pessac-Leognan with notes of scorched earth, tobacco leaf and black and red currants, but no hard edges. Fragrant, complex aromatics are followed by a savory, expansively flavored wine made from a final blend of 65% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Merlot and 5% Petit Verdot. The wine hit 13.5% natural alcohol, which must certainly be among the highest they have ever achieved, even eclipsing the 2009. An opulent, precocious style of wine that seems much more developed, complex and delicious than I thought from barrel, this beauty can be drunk in 5-6 years or cellared for 20 or more. 95 Points. Robert Parker (March 2013)
This shows beautiful aromas of flowers, raspberries and blackberries that follow through to a full body with ultra silky tannins and a long, long finish. It lasts for minutes. Best in 2018 or later. 96 Points. James Suckling (March 2013)
The 2010 Domaine de Chevalier shows a little more amplitude compared to the Malartic-Lagravière, red and black fruit, undergrowth, pressed rose petals and a touch of crushed stone all beautifully defined. The palate is medium-bodied with supple tannins but demonstrating great depth. This feels saline, slightly marine-influenced in the mouth, with outstanding precision on the slightly peppery finish. Oliver Bernard oversaw a magnificent Grand Vin. 2023 - 2050. 94 Points. Neal Martin (April 2020)
FOOD PAIRING INSPIRATION
It is said that with great wines, simple, high quality foods pair best. Entrecote Bordelaise would be a fine choice to pair with this wine but so would any red roast meat dish, veal or game.
VINTAGE AND WINEMAKING
2010 was an exceptional year with a long dry summer that enabled the grapes to ripen at their own pace, retaining complexity and tannic structure. Harvest started late in September and finished towards the end of October. This resulted in grapes with high sugar levels, tannins and acidity giving way to balanced and fresh wines. Cabernet Sauvignon ripened perfectly.
The wine consists of Cabernet Sauvignon (55%), Merlot(40%) and Cabernet Franc (5%). It is is fermented in temperature-controlled, stainless steel vats and then matured in French oak barrels (50% new) for 18 months.
The vineyard terroir consists of gravel with black sand, clay and hard soil. They are situated on gentle slopes and rise up to 60 metres above sea level. These are the highest elevations in the appellation.
The vines are separated into 90 different parcels with the best terroir situated in the front of the Chateau where the oldest vines of Cabernet Sauvignon are planted. Bernard uses sustainable farming practices in the vineyards and has recently converted 30 hectares into biodynamically farmed parcels.
“Each plot of vines, indeed, each individual vine is different, and is therefore treated differently. There are no hard and fast rules… First and foremost, we observe what is going on in the vineyard closely every day. Each plot receives nutrients and treatments in keeping with its specific needs …Our approach is deeply ecological…” Olivier Bernard
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SERVICE AND STORAGE TIPS
We recommend this wine should be ideally stored around 12°C, served at room temperature and decanted for at least 2 hours before serving.
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2010 Domaine de Chevalier, Pessac-Leognan, Bordeaux, France
|Domaine de Chevalier
|AOC Pessac Leognan
|Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot
|Extraordinary - Parker
|For laying down
|Beef, Lamb, Game
|96 Points - James Suckling
|94 Points - Neal Martin
|95 Points - Robert Parker
|18.5/20 - Steven Spurrier
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