For me, 2021 was the year that I came back to Bordeaux. Maybe I'm just older now -- two kids under seven and two years of COVID put more than a few grey shocks in my hair. Or maybe my inner contrarian finally won out against all the cloudy hipster juice with really good labels on Instagram. But I mostly attribute it to an attempt to rediscover what originally drew me to wine. It wasn't glou glou, as often as I crave its presence now. It was bottles that hit harder, define meals, give comfort, wax philosophical, and above all else, make your jaw quiver in wonder that something so complex could come from a bunch of grapes.
That's not most Bordeaux. Most Bordeaux is bullshit. But it is the best Bordeaux. And it's why Bordeaux has always mattered. The Ormiale was the best Bordeaux that I drank in 2021. It toes every line perfectly -- fruit, earth, power, elegance, minerality, buoyancy, and even a hint of horse's ass. And it's made impeccably. Demeter-certified organic farming, super low yields, no inputs, no sulfur. I love this wine.
Varieties: Merlot/ Cabernet Sauvignon
Vinification Method: Grapes are hand harvested and destemmed. The wine ferments for 4-5 weeks and is matured in used french oak barrels for 12 months. Zero sulfur added.
Ormiale is a project Fabrice Domercq started in 2007 in the Entre-deux-Mers region of Bordeaux. Ormiale took their small .69 hectare plot organic in 2009, and now cultivates 2 hectares of demeter certified vines in the Côtes de Castillon and Côtes de Francs. They work with very low yields, between 20-29 hl/ha (compared to the 59 hl/ha authorized maximum in this region). All grapes are destemmed by hand, and manually loaded into conical french oak vats where the fermentation takes place without additives. The wines are almost always made without any addition of sulfur.
-Jenny & Francois