Giacomo 2014, IGT Toscana
Giacomo 2014, made of 100% Merlot, is the evolution of Paggio Merlot, produced in 2010 and 2012. Building on the complex structure of the 2012 vintage, this new version adds a lively, elegant tannic note and a slight sweetness (or “souplesse” as the French would call it) that is precisely what Giacomo would have loved!
We decided to dedicate it to my father when, after a particularly difficult and complex 2014 season, complicated by the fact that my husband and I are newcomers to the world of viticulture, the quality of our small Merlot harvest was miracously exceptional.
My father always said that vines struggling between life and death give their very best fruit. In 2014, the elevated humidity and spikes of intense heat especially at the end of the summer made for extremely difficult, draught-like conditions. In general, the grapes, Sangiovese in particular, were adversely affected, but our little Merlot vineyard reacted by producing highly concentrated and flavorful fruit. So, we made a meticulous selection of only the best grapes, bringing only 50% of the harvest into the cellar.
I have always thought of this corner of the vineyard as a little private vegetable garden because it’s somewhat sheltered and cool, thanks to a natural spring nearby. The area is sun-drenched, but lies adjacent to a forest so the humidity stays at an optimal level. Years ago, the farmer next door cultivated tomatoes in that spot and they were excellent. So, I made the assumption that grapes planted in the same place would have a similar outcome. Merlot is by nature a simple varietal. They say it grows well anywhere. But precisely because of its simplicity, scarce need of attention, autonomy and silence, it called to me. It has a wonderful color and flavor and even when it is blended with its more difficult, pretentious spouse, Sangiovese, it always very appealing.
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