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2019

‘At Masseto, we try to do as little
as possible to the wines. Our goal
is simply to capture the essence of
nature and take it to the highest level.’

‘At Masseto, we try to do as little as possible to the wines. Our goal is simply to capture the essence of nature and take it to the highest level.’

‘The place is very natural, rough, unspoilt. It is quite a tough site. It is too extreme. We are always on
the edge of making a great wine, and it can go either way. There is always the risk of failure.
There’s a real power here and it’s really nature that makes all the important decisions’.

Crucial to that delivery is the patch of million-year-old blue Pliocene clay that lies just beneath the vineyard’s surface. It was once coastal marsh. Over the centuries, the marshland became clay, replete with salt and traces of marine life. As the surrounding hills eroded, it was gradually overlaid by mud, gravel, sand and rock fragments. Earthquakes later pushed those layers into folds, lifting the blue clay away from the sea, bringing it closer to the surface of the Masseto hillside.

The clay’s mineral structure allows it to absorb its own weight in water. It nourishes the vine roots, keeping them cool and always lightly hydrated, even during the hottest summers. Together with the soft coastal breezes, bright sun and quantities of reflected sea light, it provides textbook perfect conditions for slow grape polyphenol ripening.

‘The core of Masseto, its warp thread, is a Mahler
symphony played by a full orchestra. The weft is a small
chamber music ensemble. It’s that orchestral power that
needs very careful handling.’

‘The core of Masseto, its warp thread, is a Mahler symphony played by a full orchestra. The weft is a small chamber music ensemble. It’s that orchestral power that needs very careful handling.’

It’s more like a very intricate
patchwork, with the blue clay at its core.

Climate
and vintage

The year 2019 was characterised by a highly variable climate, which alternated periods of cold and rain with long bouts of drought and heat.
After a rather normal winter, budding took place on the first week of April. Cold and rainy conditions throughout April and May considerably slowed down development of the vegetation, delaying flowering to 10 days later than usual. In June, the climate suddenly turned hot and dry, with peak temperatures of 37°C reached at the end of the month. All summer long the weather remained hot and sunny, with temperatures 2°C higher than average and 45 consecutive days without rain. In the last week of July, the long period of drought was interrupted by two days of rain, readjusting the temperature to the seasonal norm, with ideal conditions for grape ripening.
After another set of rain showers at the beginning of the month, Merlot harvest began on 5th September with the young vines and went on until 20th September under perfect conditions. Harvest was completed with the Cabernet Franc on 1st October.

Vinification
and ageing

The bunches, hand harvested in 15kg crates, were sorted by hand on a double sorting table before and after destemming and then subjected to soft crushing. Most of the fermentation took place in concrete tanks, while the grapes from some small parcels fermented in barrels at temperatures between 25 and 30°C. Maceration times ranged from 21 to 28 days. Malolactic fermentation began in 100% new oak barrels, while keeping the various lots separate for the first 12 months of ripening.
Subsequently, the wine was blended and reintroduced once again into the barrels for another year, for a total of 24 months. As usual, Masseto 2019 was given another 12 months in bottle before being released on the market.

Tasting
notes

Masseto 2019, harvested slightly later than usual has benefited from the sunny but mild weather in early September, giving a dense yet harmonious expression. The youthful colour suggests a rich and intense wine, the nose shows textbook scents of ripe cherries, violet, liquorice and dark chocolate. The palate is broad and dense with velvety and refined tannins that coat the palate, while leaving a fresh and vibrant finish.

Tasted in November 2021

Climate
and vintage

The year 2019 was characterised by a highly variable climate, which alternated periods of cold and rain with long bouts of drought and heat.
After a rather normal winter, budding took place on the first week of April. Cold and rainy conditions throughout April and May considerably slowed down development of the vegetation, delaying flowering to 10 days later than usual. In June, the climate suddenly turned hot and dry, with peak temperatures of 37°C reached at the end of the month. All summer long the weather remained hot and sunny, with temperatures 2°C higher than average and 45 consecutive days without rain. In the last week of July, the long period of drought was interrupted by two days of rain, readjusting the temperature to the seasonal norm, with ideal conditions for grape ripening.
After another set of rain showers at the beginning of the month, Merlot harvest began on 5th September with the young vines and went on until 20th September under perfect conditions. Harvest was completed with the Cabernet Franc on 1st October.

Vinification
and ageing

The bunches, hand harvested in 15kg crates, were sorted by hand on a double sorting table before and after destemming and then subjected to soft crushing. Most of the fermentation took place in concrete tanks, while the grapes from some small parcels fermented in barrels at temperatures between 25 and 30°C. Maceration times ranged from 21 to 28 days. Malolactic fermentation began in 100% new oak barrels, while keeping the various lots separate for the first 12 months of ripening.
Subsequently, the wine was blended and reintroduced once again into the barrels for another year, for a total of 24 months. As usual, Masseto 2019 was given another 12 months in bottle before being released on the market.

Tasting
notes

Masseto 2019, harvested slightly later than usual has benefited from the sunny but mild weather in early September, giving a dense yet harmonious expression. The youthful colour suggests a rich and intense wine, the nose shows textbook scents of ripe cherries, violet, liquorice and dark chocolate. The palate is broad and dense with velvety and refined tannins that coat the palate, while leaving a fresh and vibrant finish.

Tasted in November 2021