Robert Parker 98
The awesome, saturated purple-colored 1999 Messorio is a 100% Merlot aged 18 months in French oak prior to being bottled without filtration. The alcohol is a lofty 14.6% and the dry extract number is about the highest technically I have ever seen. The first vintage of this cuvee was 1995, so it is still an infant in terms of how well it develops in the bottle. However, the 1999 is packed and stacked. Aromas of cola, coffee, blackberries, and intense black cherry jam interspersed with mocha, licorice, and pain grille characteristics are followed by a massive wine with great precision, purity, concentration, and length. I don’t want to get too carried away since only 4,000 bottles were produced, but this is a riveting example of what can be achieved on the Tuscan coastline. Anticipated maturity: 2009-2019. A Leonardo Locascio Selection, Winebow, Hohokus, NJ; tel. (201) 445-0620
Anticipated maturity: 2009-2019
Some half-sized 112 litre barrels were used in the cellar. This is definitively not for classicists. Only the churlish could fail to admit that this hand-crafted all-Merlot is a crowd-pleaser but this is new-wave Maremma stuff rather than an expression of any Tuscan heritage. The fruit is gorgeously round but there is still sweet oak on the nose which will displease some tasters. On the other hand it is extremely suave and classy – not just sweet grape juice – despite its youth.
Anticipated maturity: 2005-2010
The 1999 is one of the more focused, intense Messorios in this lineup. It shows the minerality and drive of the cooler vintage in its clean, beautifully delineated aromas and flavors. Espresso, grilled herbs and mint are some of the nuances that linger on the finish. The 1999 continues to change in the glass, offering a preview of what is in store for readers lucky enough to own it. This is an absolutely joyous wine to follow in the glass.
Anticipated maturity: 2014-2029