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  • Country ranking ?

    54
  • Producer ranking ?

    12
  • Decanting time

    3h
  • When to drink

    now to 2040

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The Story

Ornellaia Bolgheri Superiore DOC is the estate's flagship wine which embodies the quality philosophy of the estate.

Tenuta dell'Ornellaia's production hilosophy is based upon the belief that wines must be the most faithful expression of the terroirs that produce them. The mild marine climate and the colours and aromas of the lush Mediterranean vegetation leave a special imprint upon the character of the wines. A respect for the estate's unique territory guides all aspects of production: limited quantities to ensure maximum quality, attention to every detail, selective hand harvesting, microvinification and ageing.

The Ornellaia vineyard totals 280 acres that are divided into more than 70 vineyard plots according to soil type, exposition and varietal. There are three major soil types: marine (sedimentary deposit from the sea), alluvial (marly, sandy clays with mineral veins), and volcanic (schist, gravel and porous soils). All the vineyards are about 3 miles from the Mediterranean shore. The mild maritime climate features sea breezes that keep the sky clear, low rainfall, and long summers that favor the development of aromatic compounds.
Vineyards are planted at high density, from 5,000-8,700 hl/ha, and feature several training systems – spur-pruned cordon, single Guyot, and head-pruned vines.

The clusters are hand-picked into 15-kg boxes and then go through a selection by hand on a double sorting table, both before and after destemming, and grapes are finally softly crushed. Each grape variety and single vineyard block is vinified separately. Fermentation takes place in stainless steel tanks at temperatures between 26-30°C for two weeks, followed by 10-15 days of maceration on the skins. The malolactic fermentation takes place mainly in oak barrels, 70% new and 30% once-used. The wine then remains in barriques, in Ornellaia’s temperature- controlled cellars, for about 18 months. After the first 12 months of maturation, the wine is assembled and then returned to the barriques for an additional 6 months. After bottling, the wine ages a further 12 months prior to release.

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Wine Information

“With its usual deep ruby red colour, Ornellaia 2020 stands out on the nose with ripe red fruits and delicate vanilla and gentle tobacco notes. Upon tasting, the wine reveals itself to be rounded and velvety, making an enjoyable and engaging first impression that entices for a second sip. The tannins are dense yet elegant and the finish proves to be savoury and enduring.”

Olga Fusari 

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Vintage 2020

THE CLIMATE OF 2020

After a mild and rainy winter, there was a temporary drop in temperatures in March with a few nights below 0°C at the very start of the budding in the last week of the month. Fortunately, the newly opened shoots were still protected by the cottony tissue of the bud and were not damaged by the frost. The rest of spring had generally warm weather with normal rainfall that ensured regular growth until flowering, which took place on average between 20 and 25 May. There was an intense rainy period in the middle of June, followed by a very long dry period with a virtual absence of rain and torrid temperatures until the end of August. The véraison was even and quick between 20 and 25 July, with the grapes beginning to ripen under a blazing sun.

Rains arrived at the end of August, resulting in a significant drop in temperatures, falling as low as 13°C at night, and creating the ideal conditions for completing the ripening of the Merlot grapes. They were harvested in just two weeks to preserve maximum freshness and fruitiness, just in time to avoid a sudden week-long heatwave during which the thermometer registered temperatures of up to 37 degrees, sending sugar content soaring for all the varieties still to be harvested. This led us to begin harvesting Cabernet Franc and Cabernet Sauvignon from young vines as early as 17 September.

Towards the end of September, a passing burst of rain finally brought the climatic conditions back to normal, and the water absorbed by the grapes lowered the alcohol content to normal values, allowing us to complete the Cabernet Sauvignon and Petit Verdot harvest on 3 October.

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Information

Origin

Bolgheri, Tuscany

Other wines from this producer

La Serre Nuove dell'Ornellaia

Le Serre Nuove dell'Ornellaia

Le Volte dell'Ornellaia

Le Volte dell’Ornellaia

Massetino

Masseto

Ornellaia Bianco

Ornus dell’Ornellaia

Poggio alle Gazze dell'Ornellaia

Inside Information

VINIFICATION AND AGEING

The clusters were hand-picked into 15 kg crates and then selected by hand on a double sorting table, before and after destemming, and then softly crushed. In 2016, optical sorting has been introduced in addition to manual selection, to further increase the quality of selection. Each grape variety and single vineyard block were vinified separately. Fermentation took place in stainless steel and concrete tanks at temperatures between 26 and 30°C for one week, followed by maceration for about 15 days, for a total time in the vat of about three weeks. The malolactic fermentation took place mainly in oak barrels, 70% new and 30% used once. The wine then remained in barriques, in Ornellaia’s temperature-controlled cellars for about 18 months. After the first 12 months of maturation, the wine was assembled and then returned to the barriques for an additional 6 months. After bottling, the wine aged a further 12 months prior to release.

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