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An intense, extremely well-structured Tuscan red, showing intense Cabernet character, with currant, spice and mint aromas and flavors. Full in body, with loads of silky tannins and a long, long finish. Finest Guado Al Tasso ever. Best after 2002. 4,000 cases made. — JSWine Spectator | 94 WSGood medium ruby, less saturated than the 1997. Expressive aromas of herbs and Mediterranean brush, with reasonably harmonious oak. Plenty of cassis and blackberry intensity and character, but slightly tough, with a grittiness of tannins. Far from ready today but offers plenty of potential for development.Vinous Media | 90 VM
Fruit and complexity as well as freshness and richness. Beautiful nose with extraordinary aromas of prunes, licorice, and dried flowers with rosemary undertones. Full-bodied and velvety textured. So beautiful to drink now, but obviously has a long future ahead.James Suckling | 97 JSDark ruby red. Shows intense blackberry, currant, fresh herb and mineral character on the nose. Full-bodied, with ultrafine tannins and a long, caressing finish. Still young and powerful.--1997 Italian blind retrospective. Best after 2009. 11,415 cases made.Wine Spectator | 95 WSProbably the finest (and most sumptuous) Ornellaia yet produced, the 1997 has it all. A dense purple color offers up smoky espresso and jammy black cherry aromas wrapped in new oak. Full-bodied, opulent, thick, and juicy, this low acid, seamless classic can be drunk now and over the next 15+ years.Robert Parker | 94 RP The estate’s 1997 Ornellaia (65% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot and 5% Cabernet Franc) combines the large-framed opulence of the 1999 with the slightly more herbal notes found in the 1998. It is a big, plump wine packed with layers of fruit and well-integrated oak, showing outstanding length and the telltale note of sweetness on the finish that defines this vintage. Despite its approachable nature today, the 1997 appears to have enough structure to drink well for another decade. Both the 1997 Ornellaia and Masseto enjoyed a very strong showing in this tasting. Antonio Galloni | 93 AG
1998 is most likely the best vintage ever for Ornellaia. Petit Verdot was not yet used in the blend. Evolved bramble fruits meld with forest floor, helichrysum and Mediterranean herb aromas. On the palate this wine dazzles with the vibrancy of the best Pomerol-like minerality, with a tight-knit structure of velvety yet lively tannins amongst the fruit, and delicate acidity pushing a slightly pyrazinic finish with long, dark notes of Marmite and cigar-box supported by some citrus notes. Drinking Window 2019 - 2030Decanter | 99 DECThis is just a baby with so much extract and density yet always polished and beautiful. Full body, velvety tannins with a dusty and gritty texture. Complex flavors of fruit, tar and smoked meat. Solid all around. Powerful still. Drink or hold.James Suckling | 98 JSA cool and sleek Tuscan red, with tarragon and fresh sage aromas, blackberry and cherry undertones. Full-bodied, with a wonderfully silky palate of fine tannins and a long, fruity finish. Very sophisticated and reserved. Best after 2004. 13,330 cases made, 3,165 cases imported.Wine Spectator | 96 WSOne of the highlights of the evening, the 1998 Ornellaia is not the most profound wine on the table, but it is among the most pleasing because it is in such a perfect place for current drinking. The aromatics are super-refined, but everything about the 1998 speaks to total polish. Hints of cedar, tobacco, licorice, mocha and savory herbs give the wine its nuanced personality. From magnum, the 1998 has another decade of fine drinking ahead of it.Antonio Galloni | 94 AGMade in a relatively structured style for the normally succulent Ornellaia, the dense saturated ruby/purple-colored 1998 offers up aromas of pain grille, spice, smoke, black fruits, and graphite. Full-bodied, concentrated, exceptionally pure, and long, it will be at its finest between 2005-2018. Very impressive, but it requires patience.Robert Parker | 93 RP
Nothing in particular stands out about the 2000 Ornellaia, instead the whole is clearly greater than the sum of its parts. This blend of 65% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot and 5% Cabernet Franc is a seamless beauty, showing exceptional purity with notable length on the palate and no hard edges. While the 2000 may not have the structure or complexity of the best vintages it will provide exceptional drinking now and to age 15, give or take.Vinous Media | 92 VMThe 2000 Ornellaia is notably different than the 1999, less concentrated in color due to the high temperatures of the growing season, significantly more alcoholic, but with much sweet black currant fruit, velvety and balanced flavors, and a round, smooth finish. Rather forward for a wine of its type, it should nonetheless provide fine drinking until 2016-2018.Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 91 RPLots of currant and spice, with hints of fresh herb. Medium-bodied, with fine tannins and a pretty balance. Delicate finish. Slightly austere. Give it time. A slightly held-back style for Ornellaia. Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Cabernet Franc. Best after 2006. 12,980 cases made, 3,305 cases imported. Wine Spectator | 90 WS
This is a hopelessly gorgeous wine with so much energy, intensity, density and good cheer. The superb ensemble—Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot—delivers chocolate fudge, ripe cherry, rhubarb, cola, tobacco and cedar wood. It’s tight and supple, with seamless harmony and excellent succulence on the finish. But it’s that incredible intensity that truly sets this wine apart.Wine Enthusiast | 98 WEDark ruby-purple in color, with complex aromas of dark chocolate, cola, vanilla, cedar and currant. Full-bodied yet ultrarefined, with dense, seamless, caressing tannins. Everything is in the right proportion. Superb. Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot. Best after 2009. 11,710 cases made, 2,450 cases imported.Wine Spectator | 97 WSThis is a really balanced and beautiful year with chocolate, currant and walnut character. Medium body and fine and silky tannins. Shows autumnal and light mushroom undertones. Just moving into its maturity. A warm yet fresh vintage. Ready to drink.James Suckling | 96 JSThis strong series of 2004s continues with the gorgeous 2004 Ornellaia. A lively dark ruby, it is a vibrant effort bursting with expressive aromatics and layered, well-delineated fruit, showing much purity on the palate and closing with a long, finessed finish. Readers hoping to catch this wine’s full array of nuances will have to wait at least another few years as the wine remains quite primary today. This exquisite effort is not to be missed. A blend of 60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 25% Merlot, 12% Cabernet Franc and 3% Petit Verdot. Anticipated maturity: 2011-2019.Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 95 RPThe 2004 Ornellaia (magnum) has always been a beautiful wine, but stylistically it stands out quite a bit from other vintages of this era, something that is particularly evident in this tasting. The 2004 is perhaps the most delicate, feminine Ornellaia ever made. Silky tannins frame a perfumed core of ripe fruit all the way through to the sublime finish. The wine’s inner fragrance, sweetness and balance are all impeccable. The 2004 remains one of my all-time favorite Ornellaias, and it is firing on all cylinders on this night. In 2004 the growing season was long and even, with a cool early summer and warmer late summer. Yields were on the high side, as the vines released the stored energy they had held in reserve from the previous year, which required the estate to aggressively green harvest in order to keep the plants in balance. The 2004 Ornellaia is 60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 25% Merlot, 12% Cabernet Franc and 3% Petit Verdot. The relatively high percentage of Cabernet Franc may explain the 2004’s gorgeous, vivid bouquet. The wine spent a total of 18 months in oak (70% new) prior to being bottled.Antonio Galloni | 95 AGClosed at first behind a wall of tannin, this needs several hours to reveal its full potential. While those tannins remain strong, the flavor of the fruit-perfectly ripened to flavors of fig and black cherries during a long, even growing season-is what powers the wine. Elegantly composed of 60 percent cabernet sauvignon, 25 percent merlot and lesser amounts of franc and petit verdot, the 2004 is a classic vintage of Ornellaia. Cellar this and watch it develop over the next 10 to 20 years.Wine and Spirits | 93 W&S
Still very young. Shows complex aromas of ripe fruit, blackberries, plums and currants. Polished, with soft tannins, a full body and a very long finish. Drink or hold.James Suckling | 95 JSDisplays beautiful aromas of ripe fruit, with currant, plum and blackberry. This complex and full-bodied Tuscan red has soft, polished tannins and a long, long finish. Shows a deft hand in the winemaking. Best after 2012. 11,660 cases made, 2,440 cases imported.Wine Spectator | 95 WSThe 2005 Ornellaia opens with striking, compelling aromatics that draw the taster in. Still deep, rich and intense throughout, the 2005 has held up beautifully. Sweet herbs, tobacco, spices, sage and plums add shades of dimension to a core of super-ripe, exotic fruit that is one of the vestiges of a late-ripening vintage in which the fruit was allowed to hang until the very end. The 2005 remains an infant. It should drink well for another 15+ years.Vinous Media | 94 VMThe medium-bodied 2005 Ornellaia shows plenty of delineation in its dark cherries, blueberries, spices, minerals and crushed rocks. The 2005 doesn’t have the detail of the 2004 or the richness of the 2006, but it does offer notable finesse and clarity in an understated style for this wine. My impression is that this will be a relatively early-maturing vintage of Ornellaia, which is not a bad thing, considering the age-worthiness of the two vintages which surround it. In 2005 Ornellaia is 60% Cabernet Sauvignon, 22% Merlot, 14% Cabernet Franc and 4% Petit Verdot. It is a big success in this vintage. Anticipated maturity: 2010-2020.Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 93 RP
The 2009 Ornellaia caresses the palate with layers of seamless, radiant fruit. Sweet red berries, mocha, flowers, new leather and spices are some of the many notes that are layered in this sumptuous, totally beautiful wine. The 2009 stands out for its silky tannins and phenomenal overall balance. This is one of those wines that will probably enjoy a long drinking window. There is little question the ability to blend grape varieties was a huge help in this vintage. In my opinion, that is the main reason Ornellaia is a slightly more complete wine than Masseto in 2009. In one of my blind tastings, the 2009 made a very eloquent case for itself as the wine of the vintage. The blend is 55% Cabernet Sauvignon, 22% Merlot, 21% Cabernet Franc and 2% Petit Verdot. In 2009 winemaker Axel Heinz used the highest percentage of Cabernet Franc ever in Ornellaia and gave the wine less time in oak, both with the goal of preserving as much freshness as possible. Anticipated maturity: 2014-2029.The 2009 vintage was not easy at Tenuta dell’Ornellaia because of the scorching hot summer. Readers may want to take a look at my video interview with Axel Heinz for more on the 2009 vintage.Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 97 RPIf you’ve ever wondered what makes this wine so special, the answer is simple: elegance. This shows polished fruit and spice aromas that are intense, balanced and beautifully integrated. The blend is 52% Cabernet Sauvignon, with the balance made up of Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot. The palate is dense, rich, smooth and supple. Drink this after 2018.Wine Enthusiast | 97 WESubtle and complex with sweet tobacco and chocolate. Tar too. It’s full-bodied, with racy tannins and a long finish. So fine. This is the most Cabernet Franc in the blend ever at the estate -- 52% Cabernet Sauvignon, 25% Merlot, 21% Cabernet Franc, and the rest Petit Verdot. Beautiful now but better in 2015.James Suckling | 96 JSDeep ruby-red. Multidimensional aromas of blackberry, iron, Oriental spices and cedar. Very intensely flavored and suave, with a wonderfully silky texture over a firm underlying structure. A hint of eucalyptus provides lift on the extremely long finish, which features building tannins and a violet nuance. This is a remarkably suave Ornellaia, but it seems a little less concentrated than usual and comes across as almost too polished. Maybe all it needs is a little time to put on more weight and develop greater complexity.Vinous Media | 94+ VMVery aromatic, featuring floral and leafy black currant scents that follow through to plum, iron and tar flavors. Bordeaux-like with a supple texture, yet also firmly structured, offering herb and spice notes on the finish. Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot. Best from 2013 through 2020. 2,200 cases imported.Wine Spectator | 94 WS
A vibrant example of the region. Very attractive creamy texture, almost like milk chocolate, velvety and sweet. On the palate there is a wild, garrigue type character with oregano and spice, and a leathery, tobacco finish. Drinking Window 2021 - 2035.Decanter | 93 DEC
The 2019 Bolgheri Superiore Grattamacco (a blend of 65% Cabernet Sauvignon, 20% Merlot and 15% Sangiovese) is a real beauty and shows very nicely today based on advancing vine age alone. Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah vines show great results after seven years, whereas Merlot and Sangiovese vines need a few more years before they start to show that extra degree of complexity, the winemaking team tells me. This is a complete and beautifully balanced wine that shows soft extraction and especially sweet tannins. It fermented in truncated conical oak vats and finished in barrique for 18 months. 60,000 bottles were produced.Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 97 RPDense and smooth, featuring black cherry, blackberry, plum, iron, licorice and menthol aromas and flavors. Fresh and featuring a spine of tannins, this finishes on the compact side for now. Shows balance, so be patient. Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Sangiovese. Best from 2025 through 2040. 5,400 cases made, 300 cases imported.Wine Spectator | 97 WSBeautiful aromas of currants and blackberries follow through to a medium to full body with round, creamy tannins and a juicy finish. Lots of intensity and depth. Hints of fresh sage and bay leaf. From organically grown grapes. Wonderful to drink now, but even better in 2024.James Suckling | 95 JS
The 2019 Matarocchio, the estate’s pure Cabernet Franc, is off the charts. What a wine! A generally benign growing season with moderate rain and heat, plus a newfound emphasis on finesse, produced a silky, racy Matarocchio that reaches a new level of intensity and nuance, with less of the weight of early editions. Red fleshed fruit, blood orange, spice, menthol and espresso all soar out of the glass. Aromatically intense and beautifully layered, the 2019 Matarocchio is a total stunner.Vinous Media | 98 VMThis iconic Guado al Tasso wine is now part of the Bolgheri Superiore appellation. The previous vintage was not produced and we now jump forward to the beautiful 2019 Bolgheri Superiore Matarocchio that should hit the market in 2023. This pure expression of Cabernet Franc paints the palate with black fruit, baker’s chocolate, pressed rose and fragrant mint. There is plenty of crushed stone and pencil shaving as well. Cabernet Franc is a comfortable protagonist, and the wine delivers power, intensity and depth over an elegant, full-bodied mouthfeel.Robert Parker Wine Advocate | 97 RPSo much dried herb, grilled pepper and currant on the nose. Mocha, too. Full-bodied with firm, fine and chewy tannins. Delicious, with wonderful varietal character. Bright acidity. 100% cabernet franc. Drink after 2023.James Suckling | 94 JS
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