Monica Larner of Robert Parker Wine Advocate awarded 97 points to Camarcanda 2016.
“This is another beautiful creation from the Gaja family. The 2016 Bolgheri Rosso Camarcanda (Cabernets Sauvignon and Franc) is infinitely smooth and finely textured down to the very last pixel in what is a high-resolution panoramic photograph. The core of the wine is packed tight with an explosion of flavor and concentration with so much dark fruit, spice, tobacco and sweet tobacco that unfurls from deep inside. This wine will have a long and, I am quite sure, very happy aging future ahead. It shows utmost precision and balance, with long persistence and a beautifully polished texture. Some 22,000 bottles were made.”
Monica Larner of Robert Parker Wine Advocate awarded 94+ Points to Ca’ Marcanda Magari 2017.
“This wine is released before the Camarcanda blend. Angelo Gaja and his family have worked this vintage with a deft hand. This hot 2017 growing conditions have been harnessed for their positive attributes, such as the thickness and the dark concentration of the fruit and, consequently, the wine’s freshness. Any negative implications have been absolutely eliminated and worked through. Nothing escapes Angelo’s watchful eye. The 2017 Bolgheri Rosso Magari is a blend of Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon and Petit Verdot. Some 78,000 bottles were produced.”
The winery’s flagship wine takes its name from the estate, Ca’ Marcanda, the house of endless negotiations.
Appellation: Bolgheri DOC
Grapes: 50% Merlot, 40% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Cabernet Franc
Soil: Terre bianche, white stony soils, rich in calcareous clay, with drainage ideal for the cultivation of long-lived, structured wine.
Tasting notes: Complex with powerful tannic structure, dense, with an expressive mineral character. Rich fruit and nuanced aromas with a long, concentrated finish.
First Vintage: 2000
Magari means if only it were true!, an expression used often in Italian to express desire, hope, and a vision of a bright future.
Appellation: Bolgheri DOC
Grapes: 50% Merlot, 25% Cabernet Sauvignon, 25% Cabernet Franc
Soil: Loam- and clay-rich terre brune,brown earth, ideal for the cultivation of wines with pronounced minerality and notes of goudron and tar.
Tasting notes: With its lush Merlot fruit and its spicy Cabernet character, Magari expresses the essence of Bolgheri, rich and well-rounded, with an elegant, silky finish.
The proprietary name Promis (pronounced proh-MEESS) was created by the Gaja family to denote commitment, expectation, fulfillment, and hope. The promise of quality and the reward of diligence and excellence. The grapes are grown in the terre brune (rich, dark soils) which consist primarily of loam and clay. The climate – hot summer days, freshened by brisk sea air and cool nights – is ideal for the grapes grown here.
Appellation: Toscana IGT
Grapes: 55% Merlot, 35% Syrah, 10% Sangiovese
Soil: Loam- and clay-rich terre brune, brown soils.
Tasting notes: A delightful wine that combines elegance and suppleness of Merlot and Syrah with the austerity of Sangiovese. Balanced and approachable in its youth with considerable aging potential (5-8 years).
The playful name of this wine was inspired by the sea breeze, sun, and cheerful and light-hearted outlook of the Tuscan coast.
The term means sea view and is often used by the coastal hoteliers to entice would-be guests, even though their rooms may only offer a limited view of the Mediterranean.
The vineyards used for Vistamare actually enjoy a panoramic view of the Tuscan horizon and their grapes are gently inebriated by the saltine air and brilliant colors of the Tuscan sea.
Appellation: Toscana IGT
Varieties: Vermentino and Viognier
Vineyards: Various estate-owned sites
Vinification: The varieties are fermented separately. Before being blended together Vermentino ages in stainless steel tanks, Viognier instead in oak casks for 6 months.
Tasting notes: The freshness of Vermentino embraces the roundness of Viognier.
First vintage produced: 2009
Jeb Dunnuck has published a special report reviewing the new releases from GAJA.
Highlights from Dunnuck’s report include:
“This article looks at the new releases from the Gaja family and includes their flagship Barbaresco and Barolo releases as well as their releases from Pieve Santa Restituta and Ca’Marcanda.”
“Looking at the Gaja releases, these come mostly from the 2017 vintage, which was a challenging, scorching hot year that made reaching full phenolic ripeness difficult. The 2017s possess lighter colors, more streamlined textures, and present, firm tannins.”
“Lastly, Ca’Marcanda was created in 1996 and covers 150 acres in Castagneto Carducci, in Bolgheri. These wines focus on Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, and Syrah. Both 2018s showed beautifully, the Magari in particular, and these wines all have a very Bordeaux-like style in their textures and tannin profiles. The flagship is the Camarcanda, and this more Cabernet Sauvignon-dominated wine showed a more sunny, perfumed style (it’s from the 2017 vintage) while staying balanced and light on its feet.”
Jeb Dunnuck has awarded 95 points to Magari 2018.
“More herbal notes of blackcurrants, green tobacco, cedar, and graphite emerge from the 2018 Magari, a Cabernet Franc/Cabernet Sauvignon/Petit Verdot blend brought up in French oak. Medium to full-bodied, beautifully balanced, and downright seamless on the palate, this beauty is another Bordeaux look-alike with incredible class. It has some upfront appeal, with supple tannins and plenty of fruit, yet it’s going to age gracefully for 15-20 years on its balance.”
Jeb Dunnuck has awarded 95+ Points to Ca’ Marcanda Camarcanda 2017.
“Lastly, the flagship 2017 Camarcanda is based on Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc. More sun-kissed notes of kirsch, currants, new leather, dried flowers, and tobacco leaf just about soar from the glass, and this puppy is medium to full-bodied, with a ripe, rounded, expansive texture, present yet silky tannins (although you can tell it’s from a warmer vintage), and a great finish. This beauty is already incredibly expressive and aromatic but will benefit from 3-4 years of bottle age and evolve nicely for 15-20 years.”
Jeb Dunnuck has awarded 93 points to Promis 2018.
“Based on a mix of Merlot, Syrah, and Sangiovese, the 2018 Promis has a Pomerol-like nose of ripe black cherries, damp earth, tobacco, and cedary spice. Medium to full-bodied and incredibly elegant, with silky tannins on the palate, this beauty just begs to be drunk, and I see no need to delay gratification. It should evolve gracefully for a good decade.”
Jeb Dunnuck has awarded 92 points to Vistamare 2019.
“A blend of Vermentino and Viognier, the 2019 Vistamare reminds me of a classy Condrieu from the likes of Stéphane Ogier. Lots of ripe citrus, orange blossom, white peach, and a kiss of salinity all emerge from this beautiful, medium to full-bodied, elegant white that has a great mouthfeel and lip-smacking acidity. It’s going to just sing with seafood and should keep for a handful of years, although I suspect it’s best drunk in its youth.”
Bruce Sanderson of Wine Spectator has awarded 93 points to Camarcanda 2017.
“A dense, taut version, evoking black cherry, blackberry, violet, iron and tobacco flavors, this is crystalline and precise, with a well-integrated structure for support. Offers fine purity and a long, fruit-driven aftertaste. Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc. Drink now through 2032.”
Bruce Sanderson of Wine Spectator has awarded 92 points to Magari 2017.
“There is purity to this red, from the focused black cherry, black currant and wild herb flavors to the vibrant acidity and refined tannins. This is sleek and elegant, with a light chalky feel on the finish. Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon and Petit Verdot. Best from 2021 through 2035.”
Bruce Sanderson of Wine Spectator has awarded 90 points to Promis 2017.
“Black cherry, plum, earth and sanguine flavors highlight this powerful red, which is concentrated yet fluid, and the well-integrated structure bodes well for the future. Fine balance and length. Merlot, Syrah and Sangiovese. Drink now through 2030.”