1990 Cheval Blanc, St-Emilion

SKU #951095 98 points Robert Parker's Wine Advocate

 One of my favorite Cheval Blancs, it remains to be seen if the 1998, 2000, and 2008 will live up to this offering. It is the ripest wine of the aforementioned vintages, with a complex bouquet of tobacco leaf, Christmas fruitcake, sweet black fruits, bordering on fig and plum, but no hint of overripeness, and notions of new saddle leather, mint, and incense. The gorgeously expressive aromatics are followed by a full-bodied wine revealing abundant glycerin as well as elevated alcohol, but it is not hot, and nothing is out of place. Expansive, rich, and revealing the nuances and complexity that come from bottle age, it is at its peak of maturity where it should remain for another 10-15 years.  (6/ 2009)

98 points Stephen Tanzer's International Wine Cellar

 Bright red. Very complex, deep nose of blackcurrant, red cherry, coffee, tar, tobacco leaf and flowers. Then smooth, rich and dense, with a creamy texture and lively acidity nicely extending the flavors of dark berries, plum, mocha, soy sauce, leather and Oriental spices. A ripely tannic wine with a rich, exotic mouth feel, this comes across as a more opulent style of Cheval Blanc. Finishes extremely long and complex, with a smoky chocolatey nuance and a sweet coconut note. This outstanding and complex wine will have you going back to the glass again and again. A warm and dry year, the 1990 vintage was slightly hotter than 1989 (some cuvées of Merlot clocked in at over 14% alcohol), with 11 days over 35°C between July and August. From July to September there was 27% more sunlight than average and it was very dry throughout. It was also a very precocious year, with flowering occurring around May 25, veraison (the color change of the berries) on August 12, and harvest between September 11 and 25. (Incidentally, the chateau does not have records of the final blends of their vintages prior to the early 1990s.  (10/ 2011)

93 points Wine Spectator

 Dark ruby red. Superripe aromas of raisins, dried plums and intense truffle. Full-bodied, chewy and layered, with lovely ripe fruit. Such beauty. Serious Cheval.--Bordeaux retrospective. Drink now.  (6/ 2001)

Jancis Robinson

 Pale ruby. Not the richest nor most seductive bottle of this usually very seductive wine. It was the first red of an array of six vintages of Cheval served blind at this dinner that I nosed and immediately thought 'Cabernet Franc!' After the 1928 it seemed a little bit young and unformed initially but in the glass it really came out and got sweeter and richer. It did look mature but had some freshness on the finish. Makes me want to taste another bottle! (18/20 points)  (1/ 2014)

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Varietal:

Cabernet Sauvignon and Blends

- Cabernet Sauvignon has come a long way from its role as a blending varietal, however dominant, in the wines of Bordeaux. Today it is the most planted red varietal in the world. Identified as a descendent of Cabernet Franc and Sauvignon Blanc, the late-ripening Cabernet Sauvignon needs to be planted in warmer climates to fully ripen. Its small berries can easily be identified for their distinctive blue color, thick skins and high tannins. And while the varietal has its own definitive characteristics: green pepper-like aromas and black currant flavors among them, it is perhaps most prized for its ability to convey terroir, vintage and winemaking. A relatively new varietal, Cabernet Sauvignon started making inroads into the wines of the Médoc and Graves in the late-18th century. Today it is also dominant in the up-and-coming Entre-Deux-Mers region of Bordeaux and can also be found in Southwest France. It is the companion varietal to Sangiovese in Italy's Super Tuscans and is planted all over Europe, stretching to lesser-known winegrowing regions like Russia and Lebanon. In the Americas Cabernet Sauvignon has found champions in every nook and cranny of California and among winemakers in Washington, where it complements plantings of Merlot. In South America, Cab thrives in Chile, but can also be found in smaller amounts in Argentina and even in Mexico.
Country:

France

- When it comes to wine, France stands alone. No other country can beat it in terms of quality and diversity. And while many of its Region, Bordeaux, Burgundy and Champagne most obviously, produce wine as rare, as sought-after and nearly as expensive as gold, there are just as many obscurities and values to be had from little known appellations throughout the country. To learn everything there is to know about French wine would take a lifetime. To understand and appreciate French wine, one only has to begin tasting them. Click for a list of bestselling items from all of France.
Sub-Region:

Bordeaux

- View our bestselling Bordeaux.
Specific Appellation:

Saint Emilion