2016 Tusk Estates L'Orange

Red Bordeaux Blend

  • USA
  • California
  • Napa Valley
Drink between 2022 - 2035 (Edit)
CT94 8 reviews

Community Tasting Notes 6

  • zxathlon wrote: 91 points

    June 21, 2021 - Too much hype in these Napa cult wines. Blind tasted and I thought it was eventually a young and fleshy $200 napa cab ...But...the aftermarket price goes insane. I am getting cautious.

  • WineBurrowingWombat Likes this wine:

    May 28, 2021 - Nose: [58°] Initially very perfumed with lots of fresh wild white and purple flowers, fresh red fruits, prickly brambles, damp tree bark, grass and wet earth. [64°] It doesn't take long for the fruit to somehow turn dark and almost black. There's also a bit of shiny dark chocolate and something like an empty cigar box.

    Palate: [58°-64°] Firmly spiced oak, deep black earth, gentle rush of dark red and black fruits, slightly bright bitter minerals like graphite and a bit of ash. Spice and savory bitter minerals linger long on the finish.

    Attributes: Dark medium ruby. Dry with medium-plus amounts of grippy, chewy tannin. Medium to medium-plus body with medium to medium-plus acidity. Great finish of at least 22-24 seconds.

    Thoughts: Got really unlucky with my timing here, might be going through a phase. Really tight and coiled. This thing would not open up even after being in a decanter for over 8 hours and lots of swirling in the glass. Structure is there for the long haul. On the 5th sip of the 4th glass and last sips of last glass were the best (oddly specific, right?), and even then it just teased a bit of what this could be. Cellar at least 2-3 years, probably safer with 4-5.

    Other notes: Bordeaux glass. Poured one glass, emptied rest of bottle into a decanter at cellar temp ~55° for the duration of consumption of 8.25 hours. Give this 3-5 years.

    1 person found this helpful Comments (3)
  • csimm1161 wrote:

    May 3, 2021 - A beautiful wine that is performing somewhat surprisingly well given its familial linkage to its brawny Tusk Estate brethren. At home following this now-bottled L’Orange (since my last trying it in 2019) from Coravin over the course of a couple of weeks, to ultimately popping the cork last night and giving it a bit of air, I found a full-bodied yet voluptuously accessible beast that carries both brawn and velvety silkiness. Signature Tusk/Melka texture is off-the-charts smooth, with extremely fine grained tannins framing the luscious core fruit.

    Black cherry, black and red licorice, black asphalt, and dark spice notes encompass the entire mouth. Mid-palate is full and enveloping, finishing rich, but with perfectly balanced acidity and radiance to keep the cadence on-point. Decadence without heaviness.

    I am extremely happy that the perception of overt alcohol here is held at bay. I had recently sampled the 2016 Tusk Estate and it was all about power and booze. It was ‘good’ tasting power and booze, but unresolved power and booze still the same. The flex on L’Orange is much more comparatively measured and judicious at the moment. Of the two 2016 Tusks, the L’Orange is in a much better drinking mood than its Gold’s Gym brother.

    If drinking now, I suggest decanting for an hour or so. Otherwise hold for another year or two to see how it continues to develop. 96-98+ points.

    4 people found this helpful Comment
  • watcheslover Likes this wine: 91 points

    October 8, 2020 - so so

  • Cristal2000 Likes this wine: 98 points

    September 14, 2019 - Tusk Vertical 2011-2015 plus 2016 L'Orange - W/CSIMM1161; 9/13/2019-9/14/2019 (Seven Hills Restaurant, SF & Tusk Party): As CSIMM pointed out in his note, this is a limited edition offering that will be a "gift" to list members at $150. I talked to Michael about it for a little bit and it should be released by the end of the year. Seems like it's a one time deal. Unique for Tusk by adding the 20% PV component, and I have to assume the Cab portion is juice that didn't make it into the final blend of the flagship. That said, you certainly couldn't tell it was a step down during this tasting.

    Consumed right after 2015 Tusk, this was more immediately ready to drink and was super expressive, powerful and plush. Dark fruit, forest floor, bit of smoke and char, this showed opulence without being over the top or fruity. Well structured and delineated, it has great depth of flavor and is full bodied with ultra fine grained tannins. As per usual with Melka made wines, the texture is near perfection and the finish lingers for well over 45 seconds. This will be rare and awesome.

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Wine Definition

  • Vintage 2016
  • Type Red
  • Producer Tusk Estates
  • Varietal Red Bordeaux Blend
  • Designation L'Orange
  • Vineyard n/a
  • Country USA
  • Region California
  • SubRegion Napa Valley
  • Appellation Napa Valley

Community Holdings

  • Pending Delivery 18 (1%)
  • In Cellars 250 (7%)
  • Consumed 3,086 (92%)

Food Pairing

No food pairings available.

Who Likes This Wine

100% Like It  4 votes

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