Chateau Cheval Blanc   Le Petit Cheval

2018 Le Petit Cheval

By Chateau Cheval Blanc

2018 Le Petit Cheval from Château Cheval Blanc, Saint-Émilion, Bordeaux

The 2018 vintage in the revered vineyards of Saint-Émilion was marked by a battle against the elements, eventually culminating in a triumph that resoundingly reaffirms the resilience and finesse emblematic of this hallowed terroir. Amongst the yield, the 2018 Le Petit Cheval from Château Cheval Blanc stands as a testament to the harmony achievable when artisan craft meets nature's largesse.


Vintner's challenge, investor's delight

The narrative of 2018 in Bordeaux reads like an epic, with vignerons facing down capricious weather patterns. It's the year that called upon the mastery of seasoned winegrowers to express terroir through adversity. The 2018 Le Petit Cheval encapsulates this narrative superbly, offering investors an opportunity to hold a piece of this dramatic vinicultural chapter.

This vintage stands as a beacon for what can be achieved through judicious vineyard management and astute precision in winemaking. It offers an aromatic complexity rarely seen in such youthful wines, draped with nuanced layers of black cherry and plum, intertwined with hints of fresh aniseed and violet. On the palate, 2018 Le Petit Cheval delivers an eloquent expression of its origin; a Saint-Émilion with superb structure, silky tannins harmonized with vibrant acidity that forecasts a promising evolution ahead.


The signature of an exceptional year

The rich clays and diverse soils of Château Cheval Blanc's legendary plots have bequeathed to us a Petit Cheval that mirrors the strengths and unique climatic idiosyncrasies of 2018. For collectors and investors alike, this vintage serves as a vivid display of the estate’s ability to produce wines that are both beguiling at youth and worthy contenders for elongated maturation.

Akin to finding serenity amidst a storm, each sip is an immersive journey—a confluence of diligent stewardship over bounteous vines yielding forth fruit that is undeniably Saint-Émilion. The 2018 Le Petit Cheval from Château Cheval Blanc stands as an offer for sophisticated portfolios seeking wines with stories as robust as their cellar potential.

In summing up, each glass poured from this vintage stands not merely as an indulgence but as an affirmation—one forged from adversity into elegance—a hallmark investment piece certain to enrich both cellars and palates.

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Highest score


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Scores and tasting notes


This year, this is truly a baby Cheval, right in line with the grand vin, commented Technical Director Pierre-Olivier Couet. Ten percent of the total production this year went into this second label of Cheval Blanc. Composed of 70% Merlot and 30% Cabernet Franc, the medium to deep garnet-purple colored 2018 Le Petit Cheval needs a lot of coaxing to encourage subtle nuances of crushed rocks, fallen leaves, potpourri and fertile loam to emerge before giving way to fragrant notes of warm blueberries, black raspberries, kirsch and unsmoked cigars with a touch of Marmite toast. Medium to full-bodied, the palate delivers layers of fresh, crunchy black fruits and loads of earthy sparks, framed by soft, velvety tannins and just enough freshness, finishing long.

Lisa Perrotti-Brown - The Wine Advocate, 23rd April 2019


This shows beautiful density of fruit, but the tannins arrive at the end and show impressive length and density. Full body. Wild fruit. Excellent second wine from Cheval.

James Suckling - - April 2019


Juicy, precise and elegant, this is also extremely well balanced. It has soft black fruits, liquorice and gently smoked cedar. The sensation of density is almost hidden at first but in terms of numbers, the tannins are the highest since 2011. Through the palate the sensation increases to a soft two-point jab between tannins and fruit. Picked 11 September to 11 October. Fewer young plots are in the wine this year as the dryness of the summer meant some blockages, so they sold off 16% in bulk, with just 10% going into Petit Cheval (from five diverse plots of clay, gravel and sand).

Jane Anson - Decanter - April 2019


A blend of 70% Merlot and 30% Cabernet Franc, the medium to deep garnet-purple colored 2018 Le Petit Cheval rocks up with open-knit notes of crushed black raspberries, plum preserves and mulberries, plus hints of wild mushrooms, pencil lead, mossy tree bark and cloves. The medium to full-bodied palate is plush, juicy and pretty much ready for business, featuring plenty of earth and black fruit layers, finishing long with a spicy kick. Ten percent of the total production this year went into this second label of Cheval Blanc. I'd give it just another year or two in bottle to fan its tail out a little more and then drink it over the next 15-18 years.

Lisa Perrotti-Brown - The Wine Advocate, 31 March 2021


The 2018 Petit Cheval represents 10% of the estate's production and is taken from a collection of five parcels that span all of the three main soil types of the property: sand, gravel and clay, all of which were, incidentally, in the Grand Vin in 2016. A wine of remarkable harmony and class, the 2018 Petit Cheval possesses striking textural depth and nuance. Succulent black cherry, mocha, grilled herb, licorice and menthol build in a voluptuous, racy Petit Cheval that will drink well right out of the gate. The blend is 70% Merlot and 30% Cabernet Franc.

Antonio Galloni - Vinous - April 2019

Vintage performance