Ornellaia 2008 "L'Energia"

BOLGHERI DOC SUPERIORE

The desire to nurture the Estate’s exceptional qualities has shaped Ornellaia’s philosophy since the beginning. Ornellaia is a cuvée of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc & Petit Verdot and the faithful expression of unique terroir developed in harmony with nature.

THE 2008 GROWING SEASON

54% Cabernet Sauvignon

27% Merlot

16% Cabernet Franc

3% Petit Verdot

The 2008 growing season was marked by a cool, rainy spring, with budbreak occurring within the norm.  Rainfall during flowering did however affect the fruit set, thus lowering the vine’s production. Summer brought intense heat, with almost no rain, and these conditions lasted through the first ten days of September. This facilitated a good ‘veraison’ and a very satisfactory ripening process, since the cool nights favoured development of aromas and of deep colour, while the sunny days served to further concentrate compounds in the fruit, yielding Merlot and Cabernet Franc grapes of impressive depth. September brought the cool northerly tramontana winds, which lowered temperatures. This cool, breezy but generously sunny period was particularly beneficial to late-ripening grape varieties, especially Cabernet Sauvignon, which  successfully reached full ripeness during late September and the beginning of October, with high levels of aromatic compounds and polyphenols.

VINIFICATION AND AGEING

Merlot grapes were harvested between 2 – 18 September, Cabernet Franc between 9 – 30 September, Petit Verdot between 17 – 26 September, and, finally, Cabernet Sauvignon between 24 September and 7 October. The clusters were hand-picked into 15-kg boxes and then graded and selected by hand on a double sorting table, before and after destemming, and finally soft-pressed. Each grape variety and single vineyard block was vinified separately. Fermentation took place in stainless steel tanks at temperatures between 26-30°C for one week, followed by 10-15 days of maceration on the skins. The malolactic fermentation took place primarily in oak barriques, 70% new and 30% once-used. The wine then remained in barriques, in Tenuta dell’Ornellaia’s temperature-controlled cellars for about 20 months.  After the first 12 months of maturation, the wine was assembled and then returned to the barriques for an additional 8 months. After bottling, the wine aged a further 10 months prior to release.

WINEMAKER’S TASTING NOTES

“Ornellaia 2008 represents one of the most classic expressions of the Bolgheri terroir. Fruit of a harvest that was low in quantity but high in concentration, its character reflects both the generous ripeness reached in the first ten days of September as well as the crisp, lively vibrancy encouraged by the cool, breezy days from mid-September through October. Its colour is remarkably intense and deep, while the nose offers stunningly rich, ripe fruit tones, alongside the classic balsamic and tobacco notes with hints of Mediterranean herbs. The palate exhibits immense depth, complex and dense, with tannins that are powerful, but fine-grained, velvety, and racy, giving Ornellaia 2008 a sensation of impressive solidity. A vintage with good aging potential.”

Axel Heinz – May 2010

RATINGS

Wine Advocate 97

Wine Spectator 93

James Suckling 98

Antonio Galloni 97

Falstaff 96

THE 2008 GROWING SEASON

54% Cabernet Sauvignon

27% Merlot

16% Cabernet Franc

3% Petit Verdot

The 2008 growing season was marked by a cool, rainy spring, with budbreak occurring within the norm.  Rainfall during flowering did however affect the fruit set, thus lowering the vine’s production. Summer brought intense heat, with almost no rain, and these conditions lasted through the first ten days of September. This facilitated a good ‘veraison’ and a very satisfactory ripening process, since the cool nights favoured development of aromas and of deep colour, while the sunny days served to further concentrate compounds in the fruit, yielding Merlot and Cabernet Franc grapes of impressive depth. September brought the cool northerly tramontana winds, which lowered temperatures. This cool, breezy but generously sunny period was particularly beneficial to late-ripening grape varieties, especially Cabernet Sauvignon, which  successfully reached full ripeness during late September and the beginning of October, with high levels of aromatic compounds and polyphenols.

VINIFICATION AND AGEING

Merlot grapes were harvested between 2 – 18 September, Cabernet Franc between 9 – 30 September, Petit Verdot between 17 – 26 September, and, finally, Cabernet Sauvignon between 24 September and 7 October. The clusters were hand-picked into 15-kg boxes and then graded and selected by hand on a double sorting table, before and after destemming, and finally soft-pressed. Each grape variety and single vineyard block was vinified separately. Fermentation took place in stainless steel tanks at temperatures between 26-30°C for one week, followed by 10-15 days of maceration on the skins. The malolactic fermentation took place primarily in oak barriques, 70% new and 30% once-used. The wine then remained in barriques, in Tenuta dell’Ornellaia’s temperature-controlled cellars for about 20 months.  After the first 12 months of maturation, the wine was assembled and then returned to the barriques for an additional 8 months. After bottling, the wine aged a further 10 months prior to release.

WINEMAKER’S TASTING NOTES

“Ornellaia 2008 represents one of the most classic expressions of the Bolgheri terroir. Fruit of a harvest that was low in quantity but high in concentration, its character reflects both the generous ripeness reached in the first ten days of September as well as the crisp, lively vibrancy encouraged by the cool, breezy days from mid-September through October. Its colour is remarkably intense and deep, while the nose offers stunningly rich, ripe fruit tones, alongside the classic balsamic and tobacco notes with hints of Mediterranean herbs. The palate exhibits immense depth, complex and dense, with tannins that are powerful, but fine-grained, velvety, and racy, giving Ornellaia 2008 a sensation of impressive solidity. A vintage with good aging potential.”

Axel Heinz – May 2010

RATINGS

Wine Advocate 97

Wine Spectator 93

James Suckling 98

Antonio Galloni 97

Falstaff 96

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