The Tb points given to this wine are the world’s most valid and most up-to-date evaluation of the quality of the wine. Tastingbook points are formed by the Tastingbook algorithm which takes into account the wine ratings of the world's 50 best-known professional wine critics, wine ratings by thousands of tastingbook’s professionals and users, the generally recognised vintage quality and reputation of the vineyard and winery. Wine needs at least five professional ratings to get the Tb score. Tastingbook.com is the world's largest wine information service which is an unbiased, non-commercial and free for everyone.
Masseto 2014 has been released at £4,200 per 12×75. At this price, it is currently available below all the other recent vintages available in the market.
The Wine Advocate’s Monica Larner commented that “the 2014 Masseto has developed beautifully over the past few years” and awarded the wine 94 points.
James Suckling scored the wine 97 points. In his tasting note he said that “the texture and intensity are exceptional. Fantastic for the vintage”.
Prices for Masseto are 79% correlated to Wine Advocate score. Based on today’s release of £4,200 per 12×75, Liv-ex’s ‘fair value’ methodology places the wine below the trend line. It may therefore represent an exciting opportunity for buyers.
The 2012 vintage also looks attractive.
Masseto was born ‘almost by chance’ in 1986 when it was decided to vinify the Merlot from the Masseto vineyard alone as it ‘promised well’. This small, exceptional and legendary cru has soon become a collector’s item sold in auctions all over the world. The first vintage was called very simply ‘Merlot’ but, from 1987, it has taken on the name of its vineyard ‘Masseto’.
The Masseto vineyard is a unique place. Blessed with the generosity of a Mediterranean climate, this small vineyard enjoys breath-taking views, which stretch to the Tuscan coast, and a mosaic of different soils including an exceptional presence of grey clay. The gentle breezes coming off the sea during the war summer months, the intensity of the sunlight and the specificity of the unique soils, allow the vines to develop and ripen gradually and contribute to granting Masseto its enchanting combination of freshness and ripeness.
The wine is the synthesis of its singular 7 hectare vineyard formed of three types of soil. At the top of the hill, at around 120 metres above sea level, the loosest ground is made up of clay and sand with numerous pebbles and, this contributes to the elegant nature of the wine. In the sloping part of the vineyard (with about a 10% gradient), grey clay predominates and gives the wine its structural backbone. Lastly, the lower rows grow on less clayey soil which lends the wine its fullness, warmth and generosity.
The bunches, hand harvested in 15kg crates, were carefully sorted by hand on a double sorting table before and after destemming and then subjected to a gentle crushing. Six different lots were vinified separately. Fermentation took place in both steel and wood tanks, followed by 15-20 days maceration at a temperature between 25 and 30° C. Afterwards, malolactic fermentation took place in 100% new oak barrique, and the different lots were kept separate for the first 12 months of maturation. The wine was then blended and reintroduced into the barrels for another year, making a total of 24 months. After bottling, the wine was aged for an additional 12 months prior to release.
Tenuta dell'Ornellaia makes outstanding wines even in poor vintages - better than any other. In the capable hands of winemaker Thomas Duroux and consultant Michel Rolland, the estate continues its long-standing, stellar record of world-class wine production. Even the estate's "second" wines demonstrate high quality grape growing and flawless production methods. Located in Tuscany's tiny coastal DOC of Bolgheri, the estate was one of the first to plant vines in the area. With producers like Tenuta San Guido Sassicaia, Antinori, Grattamacco, and Le Macchiole among others, Bolgheri is the hotbed of winemaking momentum in Toscana.
With the same name as the winery, a reference to the grove of flowering ash trees surrounding it, Ornellaia is the estate's principal wine. The 63 acres of predominantly Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot, with small plantings of Cabernet Franc vines, lie on elevated parcels composed of clay, gravel, and loam soils. The clones of diverse origins yield a rich palette of nuances. All grapes are destemmed, gently pressed, and introduced into either wooden or stainless steel fermentation vessels. Maceration takes place over a period of 25-32 days at a temperature not exceeding 30 degrees Celsius, during which time the wine completes its alcoholic fermentation. The juice remains unblended until the wines have spent approximately one year in small French barriques. The final cuvee is assembled to evoke the vinous finess of the Cabernet highlighted by ripe, aromatic notes of Merlot in an elegant yet firm style balancing fruit, acidity, oak, and tannic backbone.
The estate's Le Volte is a blend of Tuscan Sangiovese with Bordeaux's Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot that can be considered a "Young Ornellaia." They also produce Le Serre Nuove, the "second Ornellaia," and Masseto, one Bolgheri's greatest wines!
Due to a warm, rainy winter, dry spring, and damp August, 2014 was an unusual year in Masseto’s history. The weather conditions – particularly those experienced in August – made it difficult for the grapes to ripen and significantly increased the risk of fungal diseases. However, thanks to vineyard’s resilient blue clay soils, and the team’s meticulous work in the vineyard, including leaf-pulling and anti-fungal treatments, the grapes remained healthy up through harvest in September and October, when the weather was mostly sunny and dry. During harvest, the best clusters were hand selected, getting passed through multiple times before being re-examined on the sorting tables.
Following de-stemming and yet another sorting, the grapes were separated according to the eight vineyard blocks from which they were picked. Grapes from each vineyard block were gently pressed and vinified separately. Fermentation took place in a combination of steel and wood tanks, then malolactic fermentation started in 100% new oak barrels. The different lots were kept separate for 12 months before being combined and aged in barrels for another 12 months. The wine was then aged in the bottle for another 12 months before
“Stylistically, the wine displays outstanding balance, with supple, velvety tannins and remarkably complex aromatics,” noted Alex Heinz, Winemaker and Estate Director. “This Masseto expresses a refined sensuality and silk-smooth seductiveness, all in its own distinctively classic, elegant fashion. The combination of terroir and style found in the 2014 vintage attests to the incredible ability of Masseto to cope with adverse weather conditions.”
“This year marks a very special year for Masseto,” explained Alex Belson, Director of Masseto. “We have started excavations, delving deep into the heart of the Masseto hill, in order to lay the foundations for a dedicated winery that will be completed for harvest 2018. It has been amazing to witness the uncovering of these clays... blue, impenetrable and exceptional.”