The 2018 Le Volte dell’Ornellaia is fresh, fruity and an absolute delight to taste. Crushed red berry fruit, spice and floral notes abound, giving the 2018 an effusive character that is impossible to miss. Silky and gracious, the 2018 will drink well upon release. The purity of the flavors here is really quite lovely.
Drink 2020 - 2028
Antonio Galloni, vinous.com (Dec 2020)
Moving to the reds, the 2018 Le Volte Dell'Ornellaia can be thought of as the entry-level wine of this great estate and is mostly Merlot with small amounts of other red varieties. It has a juicy, Mediterranean vibe in its bright cherry and redcurrant fruits as well as loads of peppery herbs, new leather, and spicy aromas and flavors. Medium-bodied, elegant, and undeniably delicious, with both richness and freshness, it's ideal for drinking any time over the coming 4-6 years.
Jeb Dunnuck, jebdunnuck.com (Aug 2020)
There’s purity of fruit here with crushed plums, flowers, fresh sage and rosemary on both the nose and palate. It’s full-bodied, yet soft and pretty at the finish. Very drinkable now.
James Suckling, jamessuckling.com (Apr 2021)
About this WINE
Tenuta dell’Ornellaia is located in one of the world’s most exciting wine regions: Bolgheri. A breathtaking avenue lined by towering cypress trees leads inland from the Aurelia, the old Roman coastal road, up to the walls of Bolgheri’s medieval hamlet. From the village the view extends far out to sea and on a clear day the islands of the Tuscan Archipelago and Corsica can be seen.
The mild maritime climate and the lush Mediterranean vegetation leave an imprint upon the character of the wines. Tenuta dell’Ornellaia's unique territory guides all aspects of production: limited quantities to ensure maximum quality, attention to every detail, selective hand harvesting, microvinification and ageing.
Bolgheri is a new DOC in the coastal Maremma region which first rose to prominence during the 1970s with the emergence of the so-called Super Tuscan wines like Ornellaia and Sassicaia. These new ventures had rocked the DOC establishment by using high proportions of Cabernet Sauvignon, opting out of the DOC system and relabeling their wines as simply Vino da Tavola (table wine).
Having won universal acclaim and exchanging hands for unprecedented prices (higher even than Tuscany's finest examples), the authorities relented and awarded Bolgheri its own DOC. The actions of the Super Tuscans inspired a generation in Italy, even if some of the wines here have lost a little of their lustre since.
Cabernet Sauvignon lends itself particularly well in blends with Merlot. This is actually the archetypal Bordeaux blend, though in different proportions in the sub-regions and sometimes topped up with Cabernet Franc, Malbec, and Petit Verdot.
In the Médoc and Graves the percentage of Cabernet Sauvignon in the blend can range from 95% (Mouton-Rothschild) to as low as 40%. It is particularly suited to the dry, warm, free- draining, gravel-rich soils and is responsible for the redolent cassis characteristics as well as the depth of colour, tannic structure and pronounced acidity of Médoc wines. However 100% Cabernet Sauvignon wines can be slightly hollow-tasting in the middle palate and Merlot with its generous, fleshy fruit flavours acts as a perfect foil by filling in this cavity.
In St-Emilion and Pomerol, the blends are Merlot dominated as Cabernet Sauvignon can struggle to ripen there - when it is included, it adds structure and body to the wine. Sassicaia is the most famous Bordeaux blend in Italy and has spawned many imitations, whereby the blend is now firmly established in the New World and particularly in California and Australia.