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2005 Ornellaia - Masseto

ITALY / TUSCANY /
abv 14.0%
  • 94 WA
  • 96 WS
  • Variety
    Merlot
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SKU: 53693-2005-6000-1A
  • Wine Spectator | Rating: 96

    Smells like chocolate mousse, with crushed raspberry and hints of flowers. Full-bodied, with chewy tannins and a rich, fruity finish. This is powerful and structured Merlot, with layers and layers of everything. Needs time to come around. 2,660 cases made.
    Author: James Suckling
  • Wine Advocate | Rating: 94

    The 2005 Masseto (Merlot) is simply gorgeous. A wine of extraordinary class and personality, it remains very primary in its dark fruit, licorice, cassis and toasted oak. It offers notable concentration and well-integrated tannins, all of which convey an impression of awesome harmony, finesse and balance. The tricky growing season seems to have been less of an issue for the Merlot, particularly in the old-vine Masseto Centrale vineyard. The 2005 Masseto has been superb every time I have tasted it thus far. As is often the case, the wine requires at least a few years of bottle age before it becomes approachable.
    Author: Antonio Galloni
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  • A premiere estate located in Tuscany's Bolgheri coast, Tenuta dell'Ornellaia produces the renowned Merlot-based blends Masseto, Ornellaia, Le Serre Nuove, and Le Volte. The unique microclimate and combination of clay in the soil eventually proved ideal, epitomized by the 2001 Masseto, which garnered 100 points from the Wine Spectator. The pinnacle achievement at Ornellaia, the Masseto has developed a cult following for its limited allocation.

    Ornellaia, a Cabernet, Merlot, Cabernet Franc blend which debuted in 1985, is the estate's signature wine. Le Serre Nuove, which requires less aging and displays a more fruit forward style, is something of a "second wine" and joins Le Volte, a Sangiovese, Cabernet, Merlot blend, as wines at a younger age.

    See other similar producers:Isole e Olena,Fattoria San Giusto a Rentennano

    The rolling hills of Tuscany are home to ancient vines that grew wild long before modern times. Sangiovese is the variety of the region's best-known wines, Brunello di Montalcino and Chianti. In recent years, “Super Tuscans"—blends including non-native Bordeaux varieties—have gained in popularity and acclaim. The region's Mediterranean climate, with its warmer average temperatures, provides ideal conditions for the development of rich, structured, and age-worthy wines. 

    Merlot is a soft and elegant grape with medium tannin, high acidity, and notes of plum, red currant, tobacco and red cherry. It is typically aged in French oak, which contributes notes of mocha and clove.

    Plantings of Merlot dominate Saint-Émilion and Pomerol, making this variety Bordeaux’s Right-Bank beauty. The variety is most famous amongst wine aficionados due to its presence in the world-renowned Château Petrus wine and its important role in Bordeaux blends. The typical style in this region is medium-bodied with medium alcohol and high acidity, fresh fruit character, and vegetal, leafy aromas. This herbaceous flavor profile is achieved by harvesting grapes earlier, a practice that is rare outside of Bordeaux.

    In order to generate maximum intensity of color, concentrated fruit, and soft, velvety tannin, most other regions harvest Merlot grapes as late as possible. The best examples of this “international” style are aged in new oak to add flavors of toast, vanilla, and clove.

    In Tuscany, Merlot is a key contributor to “Super-Tuscan” blends and is also made in a varietal style by top Italian producers Ornellaia, Tua Rita and Petrolo Galatrona. California producers such as Pahlmeyer, Blankiet Estate, and Pride Mountain are also responsible for some of the world’s best wines made from Merlot. 

    Merlot tends to fall in the middle of the spectrum for tannin, color, flavor, and acid, making it a strong match for a wide variety of food. Typical pairings include Cornish hen, roasted chicken, richly sauced dishes, casseroles, and caramelized vegetables.

    Collector Data For This Wine

    • 247 bottles owned
    • 70 collectors