ORNELLAIA 2009 “L’EQUILIBRIO”
- BOLGHERI DOC SUPERIORE
The desire to nurture the Estate’s exceptional qualities has shaped Ornellaia’s philosophy since the beginning.
Ornellaia is a cuvée of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc & Petit Verdot and the faithful expression
of unique terroir developed in harmony with nature.
WINEMAKER’S TASTING NOTES
52% Cabernet Sauvignon, 22% Merlot, 21% Cabernet Franc, 5% Petit Verdot
“Ripeness and equilibrium are the two qualities that can best describe Ornellaia 2009. Born from a vintage which began
cool then turned hot, it was necessary to take painstaking care during harvest in order to preserve the grapes’ crisp acidity
and aromatic complexity. The wine’s fragrances are generous and cleanly-defined, with rich, well-ripened fruit, complemented
by chocolate and balsamic notes of aromatic herbs. On the palate, silky-smooth and spacious, with glossy tannins. A lively,
refreshing acidity lifts a lingering finish.”
Axel Heinz - May 2011
THE 2009 GROWING SEASON
The 2009 growing season saw a Winter and early Spring that were cool and rainy, and budbreak occurred in
line with past years. May was dry, but the rains returned in June, without however negatively impacting vine
growth or flowering. Summer was practically rainless, and hot, with temperatures often rising above 35°C and
very narrow day-night temperature differences.
Strong scirocco winds from Africa between late August and early September hastened the ripening process,
particularly in early-ripening varieties such as Merlot. The harvest, which began on 28 August and finished on
14 September, was in fact one of the earliest and quickest in the history of Ornellaia. In mid-September came
rains, which gave a breathing spell to the later ripening varietals which matured perfectly with outstanding
complexity. The picking stopped for a full nine days, to resume on 23 September with the aroma-laden
Cabernet Franc, followed by the astonishing Petit Verdot. The grand finale came on 6 October, with the last
clusters of Cabernet Sauvignon which displayed superb structure.
VINIFICATION AND AGEING
The clusters were hand-picked into 15-kg boxes and then graded and selected by hand on a double sorting
table, before and after destemming, and finally soft-pressed. Each grape variety and single vineyard block was
vinified separately. Fermentation took place in stainless steel tanks at temperatures between 26-30°C for one
week, followed by 20-25 days of maceration on the skins. The malolactic fermentation took place primarily in
oak barriques, 70% new and 30% once-used. The wine then remained in barriques, in Tenuta dell’Ornellaia’s
temperature-controlled cellars for about 18 months.
After the first 12 months of maturation, the wine was assembled and then returned to the barriques for an
additional 6 months. After bottling, the wine aged a further 12 months prior to release.