Poggio alle Gazze dell’Ornellaia 2018
Toscana Bianco IGT
Poggio alle Gazze dell’Ornellaia is one of Italy’s most innovative and progressive white wines, providing an altogether different experience of the Ornellaia estate and its Mediterranean influences.
The clusters were hand-picked into small 15 kg boxes in the early morning hours and immediately chilled on arrival at the cellar in order to fully preserve their aromatic compounds. After a meticulous quality selection, the whole clusters were given a very slow, gradual pressing, while great care was exercised to prevent oxidation of the fruit. After gravity settling of some 12 hours, the separate lots of must were put to barriques, 25% of which new and 25% used, in steel tanks, and in concrete and oak vats (50%). Fermentation temperatures did not exceed 22°C, and the wine did not go through malolactic fermentation. The wine matured on the fine lees for 6 months, with regular bâtonnage throughout the period, followed by the assemblage of the final blend. After a light fining, it rested an additional 12 months in the bottle before release.
2018 brought the weather conditions in winter back to normal, with a number of days with temperatures below zero that were sufficient for the vines to begin their well-deserved winter rest. Spring will be remembered as one of the rainiest in history, with three times more rainfall than the seasonal average and high temperatures in April. Despite the late budding, the weather conditions and the rapid growth of the shoots allowed the vines to catch up and even flower a full week early. Even if it rained less in June than in May, there was above-average rainfall throughout June, and a break came only in July with a warm and dry month. The veraison took place between 22 and 25 July and the month of August was as hot as the previous year, but with slightly more rain. The sugars and acidity developed slowly, while the berries grew to larger dimensions thanks to the high level of water present in the soil. In September the weather was warm and it did not rain. The temperatures were higher than the seasonal average, but the cooler nights allowed the vines to recover and preserve the grapes’ aromas and acidity. Harvest began with the Sauvignon Blancs on 16 August and continued until mid-September, after which the Vermentinos were harvested between 17 and 25 September.
“Poggio alle Gazze dell’Ornellaia 2018 has a classic straw-yellow colour. The nose presents intense aromas of white-fleshed fruits, accompanied by delicate notes of vanilla. On the palate it is initially ample and soft; the wine reveals a great richness and marked tanginess that lead to a fresh and persistent finish.”
– WINEMAKER OLGA FUSARI
Sauvignon Blanc, Vermentino, Viognier
Toscana Bianco IGT
Suggested Retail Price
"Supple, layered texture"
Jeb Dunnuck - September 3, 2020 "The 2018 Poggio Alle Gazze Dell'Ornellaia, this vibrant, lively white is based on 83% Sauvignon Blanc, 11% Vermentino, and 6% Viognier. Notes of crushed citrus, lime pith, white flowers, green herbs, and a kiss of honeyed minerality all emerge from the glass, followed by a medium-bodied beauty with a supple, layered texture, good acidity, and a dry, crisp finish. Although partially fermented in oak, it's almost impossible to find any trace of oak. It's a beautiful wine to enjoy over the coming 3-4 years."
"Aromas of stone fruit"
Wine Advocate - October 13, 2020 "The Ornellaia 2018 Poggio alle Gazze dell'Ornellaia is a blend of 83% Sauvignon Blanc, 11% Vermentino and 6% Viognier. The wine pours from the bottle with a light golden hue and produces aromas of stone fruit, Golden Delicious apple and honeydew melon. The wine is fermented in new and used barrique (for about 50% of the the total), and stainless steel and cement are used for the other half. No malolactic fermentation occurs. The wine then goes into wood for six months."
James Suckling - October 13, 2020 "A bright, fruity white with fennel, lemon-peel and sliced green-apple character. It’s full-bodied with lovely fruit and a crisp finish. Refreshingly fruity."
"Especially fine in 2018"
Vinous - October 13, 2020 "Poggio alle Gazze, Ornellaia's Sauvignon Blanc-based white, is especially fine in 2018. Lemon confit, sage, mint and bright floral notes are so finely cut. I would prefer to drink it on the early side in order to capture all of that vibrancy and energy."
"Rich and multi-layered"
Decanter - January 7, 2021 "Ripe nose of peach and apricot with tropical pineapple and some orchard yellow apple and quince. Rich and multi-layered with very good ripeness on the palate allied to fresh acidity and some intriguing herbal characters."
"Round and fleshy"
Wine Spectator - February 2, 2021
"This is round and fleshy, exhibiting peach, gooseberry and grass aromas and flavors. Though plump initially, this offers good underlying acidity and a chalky, saline finish."
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