Chateau Cheval Blanc   Cheval Blanc

1986 Cheval Blanc

By Chateau Cheval Blanc

1986 Cheval Blanc from Château Cheval Blanc, Saint-Émilion, Bordeaux

The 1986 Cheval Blanc from Château Cheval Blanc is a distinguished representative of one of Bordeaux's most iconic estates. This particular vintage stands as a glittering testament to the resilience and finesse that defines Saint-Émilion's finest wines. Having matured over four decades, it exhibits a robust narrative in every sip.


Deciphering the Vintage Character

While the general reputation of Bordeaux's 1986 vintage lies in its sturdy tannins and longer-term ageing potential, the 1986 Cheval Blanc transcends typical expectations with an artful blend of power and subtlety. The season's variable climate with its dry summer and providential September rains brought out a combination of concentrated flavours and considerable structure in the finest wines of the appellation.

The precision in winemaking at Château Cheval Blanc is particularly evident in how this wine has evolved; it has retained freshness while displaying a deep, entrancing complexity. Rich, dark fruit notes entwine with earthy undertones and a hint of leather, speaking to the mellowed vigour that time bestows upon wines crafted for longevity.


An Unwavering Investment

For fine wine investors, the 1986 Cheval Blanc encapsulates not just a sensory delight but also considerable investment potential. As one of the standout vintages from this revered château, it maintains desirability for both collectors and connoisseurs, demonstrating consistent value appreciation.

The wine's layered bouquet, now edged with tertiary nuances, continues to unfold in the glass, offering an unfolding narrative with each taste—a characteristic that only magnifies its appeal to those with a discerning palate.

In sum, investing in this vintage is not merely acquiring an esteemed label but securing a piece of vinous history poised to enthrall today's oenophiles and tomorrow's enthusiasts alike. The 1986 Cheval Blanc from Château Cheval Blanc remains an eloquent epitome of Saint-Émilion’s prowess—both an intellectual pursuit and a hedonistic journey for those whom fine wine is both passion and treasure.

Market price (CAD)



Highest score


POP score


Scores and tasting notes


Tasted at the château, the 1986 Cheval Blanc has a far superior bouquet to the 1996 Cheval Blanc when I tasted them side by side. The aromatics here are far more cohesive and complex, very delineated with expressive Cabernet Franc, hints of cooked meat, cranberry, juniper berries and wilted rose petals - just gorgeous. The palate is beautifully balanced with slightly furry tannin that is offset by a superb seam of acidity. It is nicely structured but not overbearing, leather and truffle filtering through the black fruit and while there is a little austerity on the finish, it is purely complementary. Though 1986 is not known as a Right Bank vintage, the 1986 Cheval Blanc pulled victory out of the bag and at 30 years, it continues to give immense pleasure. Tasted July 2016.

Neal Martin - The Wine Advocate, 30 December 2016


Tasted at Cheval Blanc dinner at The Ledbury. The nose on the 1986 seems to have unravelled a little in recent years with soft red-berried fruit, tobacco, a touch of blueberry and a hint of soy. The palate is medium-bodied with firm, dry tannins, quite masculine and rather dry towards the finish but it pulls its socks up in the glass, gaining more cohesion and depth. This is a competent Cheval Blanc but one bereft of joie-de-vivre. Drink now. Tasted November 2010.

Neal Martin - Wine Journal Sep 2011


Another wine that seems to have some youthful characteristics, a high level of tannin and a lack of succulence and substance may ultimately prove to produce a wine somewhat out of balance. The wine shows plum, fig, cherry, earthy, mineral notes and medium body, but the elevated tannins in the finish are distracting. Nevertheless, the wine has a youthfulness and vigor that make it far less evolved than its more seductive older siblings, the 1983 and 1985. Last tasted, 12/02.

Robert Parker Jr - Bordeaux Book, 4th Edition Jan 2003

Vintage performance