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La Massa Carla 6 Toscana 2019  - First Bottle


97 James Suckling -
Subtle and complex aromas of cherries and berries with hints of orange blossoms and terra cotta. Medium-to full-bodied with very fine tannins and a long, persistent finish. Structure with finesse. Drink or hold.
96 Robert Parker's Wine Advocate -
The 2019 Carla 6 is all Sangiovese from one of the most talented winemakers in Tuscany. Giampaolo Motta has found his stride with a variety that was not an instinctive choice for a man so passionate about Bordeaux. This classic vintage is the result of a learning process, with choices that, for example, prize the use of tonneaux over barrique. "Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon need barrique, but Sangiovese reveals its identity with bigger barrels," he tells me. He also underlines that, to him, this wine is "made by the soils, not by the vineyard," a distinction that is subtle but important. This medium to full-bodied expression is velvety in texture with wild fruit, dusty mineral and hints of iron ore. This healthy vintage saw an extended maceration lasting 33 days.
96 Falstaff -
Luminous, radiant ruby ??red. In the nose initially noble spice tones, after cloves, pepper, as well as ripe forest fruits, with fine balsamic hints, appears very compact. Extremely polished on the palate, with a powerful, elegant course, juicy, slightly salty undertone, has a nice feel and a long finish, with pressure in the finish.
95 Raffaele Vecchione - -
Very ripe and spicy, it shows notes of black plums, coriander, incense, black plums and burnt sage. Full body, round and voluminous in the sip it closes solid and decisive. Captivating. Drink now.
94 Vinous -
The 2019 Carla, 100% Sangiovese, is a powerful, deep wine. Succulent dark cherry, plum, incense, chocolate, spice, leather and licorice are all dialed up. This is an especially dense, concentrated Sangiovese built on textural richness more than anything else.
93 Decanter -
First bottled in 2011, Carla 6 is the product of a single 1.5 ha Sangiovese vineyard – although only around 1ha is typically harvested as the lower section produces larger grapes which aren't as advanced in maturity compared to the higher section. Located on grey schist and sand, it's ‘a play on acidity and freshness,’ according to Giampaolo Motta. Vinified in stainless steel, matured in large cask and finished in concrete, the 2019 shows good intensity and concentration, with aromas and flavors of sour cherry, dried cherry, raspberry, earth and some chocolate. Deep and refined, it combines sapidity of fruit with velvety tannins and an elegant, savory, mouthwatering finish.

Technical Details

  • Blend100% Sangiovese
  • WinemakerGiampaolo Motta
  • CountryItaly
  • RegionTuscany
  • AppellationTuscany
  • VineyardVineyard No. 6
  • OakFrench oak tonneaux
  • Alcohol13.5%

La Massa Carla 6 Toscana 2019

Sangiovese  |  Italy
JS97, WA96, FS96, RV95, VN94, DC93

21% off retail!

Giampaolo Motta may be known as a Bordeaux variety specialist in Tuscany, but his work here with a single plot of Tuscan’s favorite son, sangiovese, is truly out of this world! 97 POINTS, and we’re the first shop in the USA to have this stunning new release!

Giampaolo Motta is the visionary behind La Massa since its founding in 1992. He left the family’s leather goods business in Naples and ventured to Chianti to learn the art of winemaking. He developed a love for Bordeaux wines and journeyed there to further hone his craft before purchasing the 27 hectares of La Massa in the Conca d’Oro of Panzano in Chianti. The land here had been farmed to vines since the 15th century, and the earliest wines of La Massa brought this property back to prominence almost immediately. But Giampaolo was far from finished. He joined up with an old friend from Bordeaux, the legendary Stephane Derenoncourt (whose consulting resume includes Clos Fourtet, Clos de l'Oratoire, Chateau Pavie-Macquin, Smith Haut Lafitte, Napa’s Rubicon Estate, and more...) beginning in 2008 to take the winemaking to the next level. And that has certainly been the case – with the best wines of the estate’s history coming over the past decade.

While best known for his Super-Tuscan blends – the estate’s torchbearer “La Massa” and their grand vin, “Giorgio Primo” – this “Carla 6” was born from Giampaolo and Stephane’s desire to showcase a Tuscan icon – the local sangiovese grape. It was a sizeable task, as much of their combined winemaking experience was forged in Bordeaux, and prior attempts to make sangiovese according to those principles were, let’s say, less than successful. The key revelation that allowed this wine to be born turned out to be the barrels themselves. Giampaolo explains "Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon need barrique, but Sangiovese reveals its identity with bigger barrels," and it seems that slight but important difference is at the genesis of this wine.

Hailing from a single, 1.5 hectare vineyard plot, and grown on a unique substrate of gray schist and sand, this 100% sangiovese showcases an incredible expression of sangiovese – one in which texture and minerality is every bit the driving force behind this wine, and not simply the grape’s unique flavor profile that is so quintessentially Tuscany. Stephane and Giampaolo practice "logical" agriculture here and across the estate, using sustainable methods such as green manure, "sexual confusion" as a pesticide, and minimal use of chemicals. In the winery, they utilize natural yeasts and minimal sulfurs to preserve the ecological balance of La Massa.

The fruit undergoes the entirety of primary fermentation in stainless steel tanks, followed by maturation in large oak tonneaus for two years, with a finish that is carried out over 12 months in concrete vats, before bottle conditioning for an additional 12 months prior to release. This beauty just landed in our warehouse, and it is everything the critics say...and more! Red cherries and currants, spice accents of clove, pink peppercorn, and toasted coriander seeds, with wafts of smoldering sage, and an elegant dash of balsamic. The wine is carried atop a deep, mineral-driven spine of scorched earth, iron ore, and crushed granite – whether from the soil or the makers’ love for Bordeaux – or both – I couldn’t say. The result is quite impressive – generous yet powerful, with plenty of acidity, structure, and overall weight to develop in the cellar, yet enough plush friendliness to be enjoyed in its youth. 97 points for a wine of this quality, at the price we have today...just another Tuscan great to add to my growing collection!

About the Producer

Get ready for an exciting journey through the world of winemaking with Giampaolo Motta! This visionary was inspired by Bordeaux and left his family's leather business in Naples to head north to Chianti and learn the art of winemaking. After honing his skills in Chianti and Bordeaux, Giampaolo finally found his true home at La Massa in the Conca d'Oro of Panzano in Chianti, where he owns 27 hectares of vineyards that have been farmed since the 15th century. He quickly gained a reputation for producing high-quality wines with his first vintage of Giorgio Primo, followed by the release of La Massa, both of which were immediately embraced by wine lovers. Fast forward to 2008 and Giampaolo teams up with his good friend and renowned winemaker Stephane Derenoncourt to take La Massa to new heights. The two practice "logical" agriculture, using sustainable methods such as green manure, "sexual confusion" as a pesticide, and minimal use of chemicals. In the winery, they utilize natural yeasts and minimal sulfurs to preserve the ecological balance of La Massa. Get ready to taste the magic of Giampaolo and Stephane's collaboration in every sip of their expertly crafted, high-quality wines. These wines embody their passion and commitment to the earth, the fruit, and the art of winemaking. Cheers!