Cheval Franc
2005
General Description:

Renowned amongst local wine lovers as the true Maltese thoroughbred since its inception in 1994, Cheval Franc was inspired by the passion for horses of Marsovin's late founder Chevalier Anthony Cassar, hence its name. Cheval Franc is a privately-owned estate wine, which is made predominantly from Cabernet Franc grapes blended with Syrah grapes, both grown and handpicked from the Cheval Franc Estate. This Estate, which is Marsovin’s second largest, is situated on the Wardija hillside, overlooking the islands of St. Paul. It was chosen for its proximity to the sea with its cool evening breezes, and its soil variety that yields grapes of excellent quality, resulting in an intense bouquet.

Grape Varieties: Cabernet Franc & Shiraz
The Vineyard & Training Systems

Cheval Franc estate in Ghollieq, St.Pauls'Bay. 4.175 hectares of land under vine. The estate is on a slope with clay soil with 20% terrarossa subsoil facing North, North West. Vertical trellis system with replacement cane pruning for Cabernet Franc and permanent cordon short spur pruning for Shiraz . Controlled drip irrigation with 6,250 vines per hectare.

Yield, Harvest & Vintage Conditions

16,887kg of grapes.

Yield: 28.3 hectolitres per hectare.

Hand harvested on 06/09/2005.

The 2005 vintage, similarly to the previous vintage, was characterised by typical Central Mediterranean winter climatic conditions and cool summer temperatures which led to a slow maturation process and late harvesting, giving deep red, well structured, balanced wines.

Vinification

Destemming, 14 days maceration, temperature controlled fermentation.

Wine Analysis: Acidity: 5.1g/l Alcohol: 13.3%
Peak Drinking: 2009 - 2014
Food Matches

Beef braised in beer, shepherd's pie, Herb-roasted meat and game.

Tasting Notes:

Appearance

Medium intensity with a medium ruby rim and a dense ruby core with tinted long legs.

Nose

Captivating aromas of a herbaceous nature with black fruit nuances of black berries and ripe plums underlined by a mineral hints of tar.

Palate

Soft and velvety on the palate with ripe black fruit: plums and dark cherries with nuances of ink and chocolate. It is full bodied, robust with warming alcohol and a nice long finish.

Conclusion

Ready to drink but will improve with further bottle ageing of 3-4 years. Definitely one of the best vintages for Cheval Franc.