Tenuta Santa Maria alla Pieve Decima Aurea Merlot 2007
Deep ruby-red color. Hints of dried plums and wild berries, accompanied by notes of coffee, eucalyptus, and vanilla. Well-structured palate with soft tannins and a well-balanced acidity and consistency, with an intense aftertaste of fine licorice. Pair with risotto, red meats, game, or sharp, mature cheeses.
100% Merlot. The Santa Maria alla Pieve estate is located in the Veneto region of Italy, inside the Val d'Illasi ("Illasi Valley"). Built in the 16th century, a Scaligeri tower was incorporated with the estate. General Massena used this tower in 1805 to lead Napoleon's troops in the Battle of Caldiero. There is also a 11th-century Romanesque pieve ("church") and a Pietra Romana ("Roman Stone") located near the front of the estate. This stone is used as the company's logo, evoking a presence of ancient centurions and joint-roads that were built by the Romans right in the area. In 1860, the estate was purchased by the Bertani family. The estate's Merlot vineyard was named Decima ("tenth") after the discovery of a stone which in Roman times served as a ten-mile marker for Verona. So, it was only fitting to also call this merlot wine by the same name. And, Aurea is derived from Corona Aurea ("Golden Crown"), a decoration which was given in recognition to the centurions that best distinguished themselves on battlefields. Together, Decima Aurea is a world-class, elegant, and complex Merlot with complex spices.