Merlot is a black berried grape originating from Gironde, in the south-west of France. We can say that the most rappresentative area for this grape is Bordeaux from which are produced (blended with Cabernet) some of the most prestigious wines of the world. In most of the viticultural areas of the world, Merlot is invariably blended with Cabernet Sauvignon, with which it gives life to the blend known as Taglio Bordolese. The two grapes perfectly integrate: the first one gives the wine its full and ripe fruit, the second one, more tannic, a greater aristocraticity and longevity. When it comes about the the Bordeaux wines area it is typical to add a percentage of Cabernet Franc in the composition of the wine which, besides a fruity component, gives it pleasing herbaceous and vegetal sensations.
In Italy Merlot arrived at the end of 1800's. In the beginning the merlot was planted in the north of Italy. In these areas Merlot grape has found ideal environmental conditions, but it is now spread in many other regions, with sometimes surprising results, even without the contribution of other grapes. A classic example is Tuscany, where the grape dominates in the whole Tyrrhenian area, in particular in the clayey soils. The Bolgheri area is consider the best for Merlot Grape. Here it takes part in the creation of wines known as Supertuscans, also based on the Bordeaux style (taglio bordolese).
Merlot is a very early vine, characterized by the need of a rich and fat soil, which retains water, avoiding sudden ripening with consequent excessive concentration of sugars and decreasing acid content. Moreover, the clay present in these soils has the characteristic of compacting in the hottest periods, shearing the youngest roots and avoiding the risk of an excessive nutrition of the plant. Merlot is generally raised in espalier style with bilateral or single guyot pruning. The length of pruning varies according to the age of the vineyard and to the characteristics of the soil, in order to allow higher quality productions. Fermentation of Merlot wines is mainly done in steel tanks, or however in inert containers such as cement, and the aging is classically done in barrique, even though the grape is suited for the production of younger and more drinkable wines, with characteristic fruity notes.
Our Merlot from Chianti Classico area however got much more balsamic characteristic. On mouth you can find quite often a fresh and eucaliptus taste.
Come and discover it!