A gorgeous perfume of blackcurrants, chocolate, tobacco leaf, and gravelly minerality emerges from the 2008 Domaine de Chevalier, which is a blend of 66% Cabernet Sauvignon, 25% Merlot, and the rest Petit Verdot and hit 13.5% natural alcohol. It’s broad, full-bodied, and seamless on the palate, and is a beautiful, beautiful wine that stretches out nicely on the finish. This is classic Graves!
Surprisingly shy on the nose, even at ten years of age - this can bed itself down for a few more years before really starting to open for business. Cabernet fruit dominates, dark in profile with layers of fine tannins, chewier and more classically-styled than some. It clearly shows why Chevalier can still go full-throttle in its third and fourth decades. Again, the slight lack of persistency tells you that this was not the hottest vintage, but it is full of classic menthol, cassis and charred oak, those tannins bouncing up to the finish. (JA)
Dense, powerful wine that impresses both with its rich fruit and its balanced tannins. The whole wine is finely integrated, black berry flavors shot through with acidity and touches of wood. Certainly a wine for aging. *Cellar Selection* (RV)
Just starting now to open, with bright fruit, light smoky and meaty undertones. Medium to full body, fresh finish. Drink or hold.
One of the fabulous sleepers of the vintage and a wine for serious Bordeaux afficionados to consider buying, the 2008 is a blend of 66% Cabernet Sauvignon, 25% Merlot and 9% Petit Verdot that achieved 13.5% natural alcohol. Surprisingly backward for a 2008, it is medium to full-bodied with moderate tannins, lots of purity and abundant charcoal, black currant and floral notes. The sweetness of the fruit, depth of flavor and textured, lush mouthfeel in this medium to full-bodied, ageworthy 2008 are impressive. Give it 3-4 years of cellaring and drink it over the following two decades. I would not be surprised if it turns out to be as impressive as the 2010. (RP)
Domaine Chevalier has produced one of the stars of the vintage, an absolute stunner that should put to rest any talk that 2008 was in any way a substandard vintage. Long on optimally ripened, distinctly curranty fruit and showing exceptional concentration and length, it is sturdy without being tough, and, if fairly supple to start, it is underpinned by ample, very fine-grained tannins guaranteeing a decade of growth.
Deep purple-ruby. Slightly reticent, medicinal aromas of cassis, ink, minerals and fresh herbs. Pure, fresh and clean, with a straightforward delivery but sneaky concentration to the blackberry and graphite flavors. Juicy acidity keeps the flavors light and lively and makes for a classic, precise Bordeaux experience. Finishes firmly tannic and long. Very typical of the undervalued, cooler 2008 vintage, this lacks only a bit more flesh for a higher score, but it's a classic Pessac-Leognan. (ID) 92+
The 2008 Domaine de Chevalier is a vintage that I have tasted several times. Now at a decade old, it has retained a surprisingly deep colour. The bouquet is divine: pure blackberry and pomegranate aromas, cedar and cigar box, its floral element seeming to have receded in recent years. The palate is medium-bodied and appears to have softened since I last tasted it, the tannins now more melted (though not fully), delivering a mixture of red and black fruit tinged with burnt toast, tobacco and a touch of sous-bois and smoke towards the cohesive finish. You could begin opening bottles now although knowing the track record of this estate, I would leave them for another few years. (NM)
Lilac, tar and cassis bush aromas are followed by a broad swath of mulled plum, black currant and maduro tobacco. The strong, mineral- and tar-filled spine drives through the finish, which picks up a smoldering edge. (JM)
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