Tag Archives: Axel Heinz

Masseto 2013

Vintage 2013 will be remembered as one of the latest harvests in  history with particularly favorable growing conditions for Merlot. 

 

masseto-bottlesThe Masseto vineyard is a unique place with a mosaic of different soils including an exceptional presence of grey clay. The gentle breezes coming off the sea during the warm 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.

Masseto 2013, which is being released in this period,  is once again testimony to the unique alliance of terroir, climate and human talent determining its timeless value. This vintage will be remembered as one of the latest harvests in the history of Masseto to date”. Alex Belson, Director MASSETO

After a dry 2012, winter 2013 was characterized by mild but very rainy weather, which caused a delay in budding of up to 15 days. A cool, rainy spring also led to an irregular, very long flowering period, with  two-week delay compared to the average, which reduced the crop and resulted in uneven development of the grapes. Fortunately the summer, which arrived punctually at the end of June, was perfect, dry and sunny, with a few peaks of heat in July and August. The slow vegetative development was ultimately beneficial because it deferred ripening until after the hottest period. The August storms significantly lowered temperatures, especially at night, which favoured aromatic expression. This however led to a later than average harvest, which started on 12 September with the “Masseto Alto” vineyard parcel and concluded on 25 September with the last parcel of “Masseto Centrale”, with predominantly sunny weather

without excessive heat.

“Masseto 2013 is the result of an overall late, fresh weather during the harvesting period. These are particularly favorable conditions for Merlot, which was able to ripen slowly and completely in sunny weather, without excessive heat. These conditions enhanced full expression of the aromatic qualities and perfect ripening of the polyphenolic content. Intense ruby in colour, the nose immediately reveals fully ripe fruitiness endowed with great freshness and complexity, underlined by delicate notes of vanilla and cocoa. On the palate, the wine is substantial and rich, with great density, and a rare tannic quality of silkiness and smoothness. Black fruit aromas are accompanied by a strong note of freshness and a long, elegant finish, which is prolonged with a delicate hint of cocoa”. Axel Heinz, Winemaker and Estate Director MASSETO

The clusters, hand-picked in 15 kg boxes, were graded and selected by hand on a double sorting table before and after de-stemming, and then gently pressed. Each of the four vineyard blocks was vinified separately. Fermentation took place in either steel or wooden vats, followed by maceration for 15-20 days at a temperature of between 25 and 30°C. Malolactic fermentation was started in 100% new oak barrels, keeping the different lots separate for the first 12 months of maturation. The final blend was subsequently assembled and reintroduced in the barrels for a further year, for an overall  total of 24 months. After bottling, the wine was aged for an additional 12 months prior to release.

 

VINTAGE 2016 HAS THE POTENTIAL TO BECOME ONE OF ORNELLAIA’S GREAT VINTAGE

harvest-in-ornellaia

ORNELLAIA: START TO ONE OF THE EARLIEST HARVESTS IN RECENT YEARS

“For Ornellaia, this will be one of the earliest-concluding growing seasons in recent years: our harvest started immediately following the late-August holidays. The reason is that, contrary to 2015, we had no significant rainfall during the month of August,” explained Axel Heinz, Director and Winemaker of Ornellaia.  “Thus, on Monday, 22 August, Ornellaia brought in the first clusters of Sauvignon blanc and Viognier, which showed excellent component levels, with a potential alcohol of 13% and a good, balanced acidity. We will already finish this week the harvest of our white grapes, while we have just started picking, in these past few days, some Merlot, and we’re planning to continue with the other reds next week.

“Significant heat in July and August speeded up the ripening process,” continued Heinz. “Fortunately, the area of Bolgheri is blessed with wide day-night temperature differentials, which in turn allows the vines to recover during the night from the daytime heat and dryness. In addition, the depth of our soils creates optimal conditions for developing the aromatic qualities of our grapes.    

“As it stands, it is possible 2016 could be among the best vintages at Ornellaia, on a par with 2001, 2006, 2011, and 2012, which were all characterized by hot, dry summers and yet gave us wines of great concentration, structure, and richness. The first rows we pick are never the whole story, so we are still sampling all the various vineyards and evaluating their potential. In point of fact, though, the figures we are seeing do indicate a vintage similar to the great ones of past years.” 

 

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