One of the few châteaux in Bordeaux that is equally regarded for both red and white wine, Domaine de Chevalier has gone from strength to strength since the Bernard distilling company purchased this Pessac-Leognan property in 1983. Under the watchful eye of Olivier Bernard (who was only 23 when he took over) the vineyard has doubled in size. For the rouge, the 58 hectares are planted to 63% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot, 5% Petit Verdot, and 2% Cabernet Franc. Stéphane Derenoncourt of La Mondotte came on board as a consultant in 2012 and recent wines have been concentrated, minerally and still very well priced.
The 2016 Domaine de Chevalier is a thrilling wine. Dense and beautifully layered, the 2016 is also quite a bit richer than it usually is. Cabernet Sauvignon aromatics and structure pulse through the wine. The red-toned fruit is incredibly primary at this stage. Readers should be prepared to cellar the 2016 for at least a handful of years. It has been nothing short of magnificent on the three occasions I have tasted it so far. 2026-2066
97 points, Antonio Galloni
"The 2016 Domaine de Chevalier is a classy affair on the nose: nothing ambitious or self-aggrandizing, just beautifully defined black fruit laced with pine needles and wilted irises. The palate is medium-bodied with sappy red fruit, filigreed tannin, pitch-perfect acidity and a captivating sense of mineralité toward the persistent finish. This is an outstanding Domaine de Chevalier, possessing a surfeit of pedigree and breeding. 2022-2055"
95 Points, Vinous
"Aromas of blackberries, red and dark plums, cedar and gravel, as well as red flowers and brown-leaf tea. It offers a very sleek and powerful array of ripe dark fruit and a very plush, focused and elegant bed of fresh, fine and powerful tannins. Plenty of aging potential, this is still quite tight. A blend of 55 per cent cabernet sauvignon, 35 per cent merlot, five per cent cabernet franc and five per cent petit verdot. Try from 2024."
97 Points, JamesSuckling.com
Though wine has been made in Pessac-Léognan since ancient Roman times, it was only in 1987 that the neighbouring villages of Pessac and Léognan were singled out from the surrounding Graves region and given their own appellation. The designation acknowledges that Pessac-Léognan is home to the most acclaimed properties of Bordeaux’s Graves region, such as the Premier Cru Château Haut-Brion.
The vineyards of Pessac-Léognan, just south of the city of Bordeaux, are crowded by suburban sprawl. About 3,000 acres are dedicated mostly to Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot grown for red wines, with a small portion devoted to Sauvignon Blanc, Sémillon and other grapes for white wines. Pessac-Léognan red wines are elegant and concentrated, with medium to full body. They offer distinct aromas and flavours of mineral and earth, and can have lush fruit or smoky tobacco character. Pessac-Léognan white wines are dry, unlike the famous sweet white wines from nearby Sauternes. They are generally crisp and minerally with citrus notes, often with rich character from oak aging and capable of improving with additional age.