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Tenuta Sette Ponti Orma 2014
Named “Orma” after the Italian word for “footprint”, this graceful wine is the rich reward of former fashion moghul Antonio Moretti’s search for prime wine-growing areas in coastal Bolgheri in the province of Livorno. The land here has long held a reputation for producing stunning red wines thanks to a favourable combination of deep pebbly soils, cooling Mediterranean breezes and hot summers ideal for ripening grapes.
Representing Antonio Moretti’s bold new venture in this relatively young wine region, Orma is a Bordeaux-style blend is a careful composition of 50% Merlot, 20% Cabernet Franc and 30% Cabernet Sauvignon. After careful hand-harvesting and selection, the grapes are macerated and fermented for a period of 18 days to gently extract optimum tannins and flavours. The wine is then left to rest in French oak barrels for 12 months and spends a further 12 months in the bottle before it is deemed ready for release.
On the nose Orma exudes classic hints of intense dark berries, sweet spices and tobacco which complement the deep blackberry, cassis and bitter licorice flavours on the palate. Like many Bordeaux-style blends from the region, the firm structure of the wine and vibrant acidity promises great ageability with a cellaring potential of at least a decade. If you do decide to enjoy it now, consider serving it alongside hard cheeses, roasted meat or even game dishes to accentuate the ripe fruit character and soften the tannins.
Rocca di Frassinello Ornello 2014
The Ornello takes its name from the distinctive long stick that is traditionally used for driving cattle in Tuscany’s coastal Maremma region. Just like the “butteri”, or the local cowboys who have worked on these lands for centuries, this striking wine is the unique product of this terrain and offers an effortless combination of power and elegance that is sure to captivate the drinker.
A vibrant cherry red hue and hints of crushed berries, ground coffee, and undergrowth are immediately apparent as you pour the first glass, followed by enticing flavours of kirsch, dried herbs and dark chocolate on the palate. The Ornello has a firm structure and well-defined tannins thanks to the Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah components of the blend, along with balancing acidity and a rounded mouthfeel due to the influence of the Sangiovese and Merlot.
Following the harvest and vinification process, the Ornello is aged in oak barrels for 6 months and then aged in the bottle for a further 5 months until it is deemed ready for release. This adds distinctive notes of sweet spices and vanilla to the wine and makes the Ornello an ideal partner for a generous platter of charcuterie or cheeses.
Donna Olimpia Millepassi Bolgheri Superiori 2015
The Donna Olimpia estate is located in the storied Bolgheri wine region close to the Tuscan coastline. The property takes its name from the wife of Gherardo della Gherardesca who decided in 1898 to change the estate’s moniker in honour of the couple’s 25th wedding anniversary. In recent years the estate has gained a solid reputation for producing world class Super Tuscan wines using Bordeaux varietals.
Millepassi means “one thousand steps” in Italian and acts as a reminder of the ancient Roman road that crosses the Donna Olimpia estate. The Cabernet Sauvignon, Petit Verdot and Merlot grapes used for this wine are carefully selected from amongst the estate’s finest and are harvested at optimum ripeness. The grapes are then fermented in stainless steel tanks and matured in French oak barrels for a total of 24 months prior to bottling. Before they are deemed ready for release, the bottles are aged for another 6 months.
The inky garnet hue immediately catches the eye, while rich aromas of blueberry, blackberry and sweet cinnamon spice seduce the nose. The first sip reveals a full body, smooth tannins and ripe dark berry flavours accented by hints of tobacco and clove which linger long on the tongue. This is an ideal wine to enjoy by the fireside or alongside classic Italian dishes like fresh pasta served with a Bolognese sauce or even bitter dark chocolate.
Donna Olimpia Bolgheri 2015
A deep ruby hue and enticing aromas of dark berries, cedar and baking spice characterise this lively red wine which hails from the young appellation of Bolgheri in the coastal Maremma region of Tuscany. The palate offers ripe black cherry flavours, a firm structure, full body and well-rounded tannins which make this a pleasure to drink with hearty pasta dishes served with a bolognese sauce or a rich beef stew.
This easy-going red is composed of Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and Petit Verdot grapes which are sourced from the Donna Olimpia estate’s 40 hectares of vines. The property takes its name from the wife of Gherardo della Gherardesca who decided in 1898 to celebrate their 25th wedding anniversary by renaming the estate after her. In recent years the winery has been re-energised by Guido Folonari who set out to raise the quality of the Donna Olimpia wines to world class standards using Bordeaux varietals.
The grapes for this wine are harvested at optimum ripeness and fermented in stainless steel tanks with an extended maceration period to extract plenty of colour, tannins and aromatic character. The wine is then aged for up to 14 months in French oak barrels followed by 6 months of maturation in the bottle.
Luce della Vitte Lucente 2016
The story of Luce della Vitte began in the 1990s when Vittorio Frescobaldi met Robert Mondavi and the estate was given a fresh vision to produce sensational Tuscan wines using innovative winemaking techniques and new ideas.
Luce della Vitte’s second wine is the magnificent Lucente which offered an authentic snapshot of the unique Montalcino terroir. The wine is made from Sangiovese and Merlot grapes which combine harmoniously together as the soft, roundedness of the Merlot supports the elegance of the Sangiovese. Following fermentation and maceration on the skins in stainless steel tanks the wine is aged in oak barrels for 12 months.
The result is a charming red blend that opens with enticing dark cherry, plum and ripe cassis aromas. The first sip reveals a medium body, a silky smooth mouthfeel and a firm structure which makes this delicious red an ideal partner for red meats or hearty pasta dishes served with a rich tomato sauce. This wine will continue to develop and evolve in the cellar over the next five years or so, but it is also ready to drink now over a relaxed dinner with family or friends.
Tua Rita Perlato del Bosco 2017
From humble beginnings in the 1980s, the Tua Rita estate has helped to put the charming hilltop town of Suvereto on the map for magnificent Super Tuscan wines. Owners Rita Tua and Virgilio Bisti purchased the original property with just one hectare of vines and thanks to their vision the estate has flourished and its wines have won top scores from a slew of international wine critics.
The Perlato del Bosco or “Pearl of the Woods” is a single varietal Sangiovese which is fermented in traditional conical wooden vats known locally as “tini”. The new wine is then aged in a combination of new and used oak barrels for 12 months before bottling. 100% Sangiovese wines are rare in this southern part of Tuscany and this plush, generous example offers incredible value for money.
The nose offers delicate scents of forest fruits, baked earth, and sweet spices, while the first sip reveals a firm structure, gentle tannins, and an intensity of dark berries. This stunning flavour profile reminds of the finest Brunello di Montalcino given a rich southern twist with extra fruit and an opulent texture. This is a stunning wine to enjoy now alongside a prime steak or to hold in your cellar over the next decade or so as the wine continues to develop and evolve.