Each vintage a selected number of Marsovin premium wines which benefit from further bottle ageing are taken down to the Marsovin cellars where they are laid to rest, develop and mature in the perfect storage conditions.
Below are the winemakers tasting notes and on the right one can read in detail about each wine and the year it was produced in. These wines can be purchased directly from our cellar shop. Contact Us on: M: 79231919, T: 2366 2445, 2366 2260, E: firstname.lastname@example.org
Mr. Philip Tonna (Oenologist)
Mr. Chris Cremona (Viticulturist)
Grand Maitre vintages: 1998 to 2011
Marnisi vintages: 1998 to 2010
Antonin Noir: 1999 to 2002 and 2004 to 2005
Cheval Franc: 2000 and 2004 to 2005
Ulysses Shiraz: 2004 and 2005
1919 Red: 2004 to 2006
What is a vertical tasting?
A vertical tasting is a comparison of different vintages of a particular wine, from the same producer. This form of tasting gives an insight to the wine making style and helps to establish the distinct characteristics of the particular wine in question together with the subtle and sometimes quite significant differences in the various vintages resulting mainly from the yearly variations in the climate and micro climate conditions. If the wine making practices have been changed over the years this will also be reflected and shown in the results of the tasting.
A vertical tasting also gives a clear indication as to how the wine is developing and an indication as to the ageing potential of the wine in question particularly after the annotations are compared to the previous vertical tasting.
In this regard it is essential that the date of the Vertical Tasting is clearly specified as the wine is alive and changes its aromas and characteristics with time.
Each vertical vintage set of a particular wine was tasted on a separate occasion in order to concentrate fully on the style of one particular wine.
The wines were all opened and decanted 2 hours before the actual tasting started. This is of utmost importance as the wines may need quite some time to breathe or open up for the bouquet to be clearly manifested.
All the (red) wines were served at room temperature, between 18 and 20 degrees Celsius.
ISO tasting glasses were used and each was marked with the specific vintage of the wine poured.
Water, to clean the palate between each wine and spittoons as well as containers to pour away any leftover wine from the glasses were also made available.
The wines and above mentioned accessories were placed on an appropriately sized large table with a matt white surface so as to be able to judge the wine’s colour and clarity, comparing the differences between rim and core, and the legs/tears which fall on the side of the glass hinting the alcohol level.
The tasting room had a good supply of clear white light and was free from any strong smells which could hinder the proper assessment of the wines.
Each taster was provided with a tasting sheet for each wine being tasted.
The different backgrounds of the tasters were shown in this tasting as Philip Tonna’s terminology and more technical interpretation, influenced by his studies and working experience as an oenologist in Bordeaux, was quite in sympathy with that of Christian Cremona, a viticulturist by profession, but contrasted with Bernard Muscat’s more standardised approach to tasting based on his current studies in the Diploma in Wines & Spirits.
Both Philip’s and Christian’s intimate knowledge and experience of each vintage was extremely helpful in assessing the expression of certain particular viticultural and vinification practices that clearly marked the styles of these aged wines whilst Bernard’s WSET diploma training came in very useful to keep an easy to understand, consistent relative term vocabulary throughout the tastings.
Below is some information and particular remarks on the Marsovin Estate wines tasted:
- Marnisi changes its colour relatively quickly even in the youngest vintages but it keeps this intensity of colour throughout.
The best vintages were 2000, 2001, 1999,2004 and 2007 sold as a Rizerva .
Marnisi is a blended wine made up mainly of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and some Cabernet Franc. However Cabernet Sauvignon is the clearly dominant variety in this blend and this is an important factor which gives the wine a relatively longer ageing potential.
- Grand Maitre is a wine made up of about 50% each of Cabernet Sauvignon & Cabernet Franc produced from the smallest and most densely planted of Marsovin’s private vineyard estates.
The best vintages were 1999, 2002, 2000 & 2004.
The 1999 vintage in particular had a very distinctively pronounced aroma of passion fruit which is quite unique to this particular terroir.
The extraordinary intense fruity aromatic profile of the 1999 vintage is most probably the result of the exceptionally very low yield of this unique vintage.
The same typical passion fruit aroma characteristics can be found in all vintages of this wine to a greater or lesser extent, with the vintage 2000 being the wine most similar to that of 1999.
- Antonin Noir’s best vintages were 2000 and 2005. The Antonin Noir is another blended wine made up mainly of Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon from the same vineyard as that of the Marnisi wine, though in this case it is the Merlot that is the predominant variety. This helps make the Antonin Noir become more approachable and ready to drink earlier on than the corresponding Marnisi vintage. The oak nuances are recognisable and its complex characteristics are shown at a younger age than the Marnisi.
- Cheval Franc: This wine benefits from bottle ageing as when released young it has intense and powerful fruitiness from the Shiraz which masks the slightly herbaceous character of the Cabernet Franc.
Though quite full bodied, it is unoaked and remains distinctively fruity and easy drinking. Low yields and warm vintages guarantee good quality and ageing potential. When mature it is one of the few Maltese wines that can be matched to fish dishes.