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.
Iron, black mushroom and dark berry with some burnt orange peel. Flowers, too. It’s full-bodied with round tannins that turn linear and tight at the end. Excellent energy. Brightness and purity.
(96-97) points, JamesSuckling.com (April 2021)
Medium to deep garnet-purple in color, the 2020 Domaine de Chevalier comes skipping out of the glass with energetic scents of ripe red and black currants, fresh blackberries and boysenberries, plus nuances of wild sage, cloves and cedar with a waft of lavender. The medium to full-bodied palate surprises and delights with an unexpected richness and depth that remains locked away on the nose, revealing layers of fragrant earth and floral notions framed by fantastic freshness and firm, finely grained tannins, finishing with the most gorgeous, long-lingering perfume.
(95-97)+ points, Wine Advocate (May 2021)
The 2020 Domaine de Chevalier is going to need a number of years to unwind. Rich, heady and super-concentrated, the 2020 is so impressive, right out of the gate. Crushed rocks, rose petal, cedar, pomegranate and mint all build as the 2020 shows off its vibrant, layered personality. Domaine de Chevalier remains one of the most under the radar wines in all of Bordeaux. The 2020 is an absolutely brilliant effort from Olivier Bernard and his team. Tasted two times.
(95-97) points, Vinous (June 2021)
From an estate that’s been on fire over the past decade, the 2020 Domaine De Chevalier is another brilliant wine in the making and checks in as 65% Cabernet Sauvignon, 27% Merlot, 5% Petit Verdot, and 3% Cabernet Franc. Offering impressive cassis and darker berry fruits, it has complex notes of crushed flowers, violets, and damp earth-like nuances. Medium to full-bodied on the palate, with ultra-fine tannins and a silky, layered, seamless texture, it shines for both its richness and its balance. It also shuts down quite quickly, so if you’re going to drink bottles, try one in its youth. Otherwise, be sure to give bottles 7-8 years in a cold cellar. It should have 30-40 years of overall longevity.
(95-97)+ points, JebDunnuck.com (May 2021)
Full bottle 1,360 g, Cask sample taken 6 April. 65% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot, 5% Petit Verdot.
Spicy nose. Pretty saline and mineral on the palate – non flashy but with lots locked in there. And no shortage at all of tannin but it's ripe enough. Very much a work in progress but with a certain lusciousness of embryonic fruit. 13.5%
17 points, JancisRobinson.com (April 2021)
The 2020 Domaine de Chevalier, which was cropped at 38hl/ha, is deep purple with glints of blue. The bouquet is very clean, precise and focused, not dissimilar to the impressive Malartic Lagravière that I tasted alongside, touches of wet granite and truffle emerging with time. The palate is medium-bodied with fine-grained tannins. This Domaine de Chevalier has a deeply impressive structure counterbalanced by equally impressive freshness and elegance, fanning out wonderfully on the finish, which is very persistent. Just a shade off the outstanding 2019... perhaps.
(93-95) points, Vinous (May 2021)
Concentrated ruby red colour, a little subdued on the nose, built with structure and power, concentrated and should age well. Classical, powerful, not exuberant, an impressive Chevalier that has tannins and fruit and freshness, nothing shouting too loud. As it opens, you see a peony floral edge that is very attractive. Easily among the best in Pessac. A yield of 38hl/ha. Drinking Window 2027 - 2042
95 points, Decanter (May 2021)
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.