Orma Toscana 2006
Bordeaux Red Blends from Tuscany, Italy
Deep, intense ruby in color, this is a sumptuous, elegant blend fully expressing the land it hails from. The bouquet recalls ripe red fruit and blackberries, with notes of Mediterranean vegetation and eucalyptus and a subtle nuance of baked bell peppers from the component varieties. Structured, velvet-textured and complex on the palate, its rich, layered flavors and roundness are sustained by a vibrant, vivid freshness and sweet, well balanced, perfectly integrated tannins even at this early stage. A very consistent, very long finish evokes the lingering aromas of the bouquet.
2006 was characterized by a very rainy, mild spring, conducive to excellent, homogeneous growth for all varieties. It was followed by a hot, dry summer that initially appeared to prelude an early harvest. The weather in August was very fair and temperate, providing relief from the heat. Soon after the beginning of September, there were a few days of heavy rain, followed by several days of sunny and warm weather continuing into the month of October. This resulted in perfect polyphenolic ripening and an exceptional harvest, which turned out to be slightly later than the previous year. Fruit was magnificent, bunches weighed a little less than average, with spaced-out berries, excellent pigmentation, and higher sugar levels compared to 2005. The ensuing wine stands out for its distinct aromas and fragrance, color intensity, decided structure combined with very sweet tannins. A memorable vintage, favoring cellar-worthy reds like Orma.
Wine Spectator - "Tobacco, chocolate, currant and licorice aromas follow through to a full body, with very refined tannins and a long, caressing finish. Lovely and polished. Delicate in many ways. Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc. Best after 2012. 1,585 cases made."
The Wine Advocate - "The 2006 Orma is a dark, hulking beauty endowed with masses of dark fruit, earthiness, licorice, and tar. In this vintage the wine is round and opulent, with just enough density to balance the French oak tannins. The wine offers outstanding depth and a long, intense finish. This super-ripe, intense red is a terrific effort from proprietor Antonio Moretti. Orma is 40% Cabernet Franc, 40% Merlot and 20% Cabernet Sauvignon. The wine spent 14 months in French oak barrels (60% new) prior to being bottled. Anticipated maturity: 2009-2016. "
International Wine Cellar - "(a blend of cabernet sauvignon, cabernet franc and merlot) Good full ruby-red. Ripe dark plum, coffee, earth and spice aromas are lifted by a pretty floral note. Fat, supple and full, with impressive mid-palate breadth; turns a bit muscular in the middle, with black pepper and spice notes adding complexity to the coffee and black fruit flavors. Finishes with good length and a note of smoked meat. A bit less soft and ripe than the '07, but these two wines are at the same quality level. "
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One wine, one estate. Both called Orma and located within the district of Castagneto Carducci, right next-door to Ornellaia. This is an area with some of the most amazing terroir in all of Italy. Orma, ironically, means "mark" or "footprint". Its first vintage, 2005, is indeed making its mark already: Two Glasses from Gambero Rosso/Slow Food, 91 points from Wine Spectator, not to mention similar accolades from the Italian press. Orma vineyards cover 5.5 hectares, i.e. 13.6 acres, between the hills and the sea: Bolgheri's finest location and a portion of the coast anciently belonging to the Etruscans and their timeless winemaking traditions.
About TuscanyView a map of Tuscany wineries (TUSS-can-ee) Sangiovese. Most of the wine coming from Tuscany is made from some clone of this varietal, but a growing trend, started by the renegade winemakers of those Super Tuscans, is to incorporate more international varietals.
Notable FactsThe most well known sub-districts of Tuscany are Chianti, Brunello di Montalcino and Vino Nobile di Montepulciano (note that Montepulciano here refers to the local village, not the grape variety found in the Italian region of Abruzzi). Wine labeled from these regions is DOC-regulated and Sangiovese-based blends. Quality wine from these DOC areas has been on the rise for decades, with top-notch winemakers and wineries shedding the low-quality image once held for Tuscan wine by producing consistently outstanding bottlings that range from deliciously drinkable to highly ageable. Newer to the scene are regions like Bohlgeri and the Maremma, home to of what are now termed "Super-Tuscans," named for the wine coming from the Tuscany area, but not following all of the DOC or DOCG laws required in Italy. In the 1970's, some pioneer winemakers began buying land outside of Chianti and Montalcino, and planting not only Sangiovese, but also international varieties like Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. The wine they produced only fit into the lowest Italian category of "vina da tavola," but the winemakers sold the wine for high prices, creating an almost cult following, and spurning a new wine category called IGT.
A little ditty about Italy...This country has about as many wines as its had governments. With 20 different regions, hundreds of DOCs and even more indigenous varieties, the amount of wine made in Italy is mind-boggling. Most of the juice, however, remains in the country for thirsty Italians. Wine is food in Italy and its rare that a meal is consumed without a glass of vino. That said, it's not common to find many folks drinking wine without food either. In turn, it's a match, and a mighty good one at that. In fact, it's safe to say that Italian wine is a foodie wine – one that goes on the table for a myraid of meals.
For regions, the most popular are Tuscany (home of Chianti), Piedmont and the Tre-Venezie, which includes Veneto, Trentino Alto-Adige and Friuli. Other communes of note are in Southern Italy, and a few good wines are made elsewhere in the country. The islands of Sardinia and Sicily are members of the Italian winemaking community as well.
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Alcohol By Volume GuideMost wine ranges from 10-16% alcohol by volume. Some varietals tend to have higher (for example Zinfandel and Cabernet Sauvignon) or lower alcohol levels (Pinot Noir and many white varietals), but there is always some variation from producer to producer. Some wine falls outside of this range, for instance Port weighs in closer to 20%, while Muscat and Riesling are usually a bit below 10%.
Wine Style Guide
Light & Fruity
- Red wines that are more fruit-forward and lighter in tannin and body.
Smooth & Supple
- Medium bodied reds that go down easy, with smooth tannins and supple fruit.
Earthy & Spicy
- Wines where earthy and/or spicy dominate the flavors – typically medium to full body.
Big & Bold
- Full bodied wines that have concentrated fruit and are higher in alcohol and/or tannins. Some need age.