Samael


Montepulciano | Abruzzo

In Jewish texts, Samael is better known as the ‘Angel of Death.’ It is believed that Samael is both good and evil in that he does the work of God but desires man to do evil. Samael is viewed as a seducer as was first spoken of in the Talmud as assuming the role of the serpent and tempting Eve in the Garden of Eden. The correlation here is that Montepulciano can be a very alluring and seductive grape that lends itself to pleasurable drinking. That said, often time Montepulciano is simple, thin and insipid. In many ways it offers both the good and bad of wine.

VINTAGE

2017

VARIETY

100% Montepulciano

REGION

Montepulciano d'Abruzzo DOC

VINE AGE

24 years old

YIELD

2.4 tons per acre

SOIL TYPE

Clay over limestone

√ČLEVAGE

6 months in neutral French barrique

ALCOHOL

14.3%

PRODUCTION

7,000 cases

VINTAGE
This comes from an organically farmed, single vineyard in Chieti located less than half a mile from the Adriatic Sea.  2017 will be remembered for record-breaking high temperatures and the worst winter snowstorm in more than a century.  These storms pushed budbreak back two weeks from the norm.  Coupled with the eventual ‘lucifer-like’ heat it made for an early harvest.  The berries had really nice phenolic ripeness though, even with the heat stress. Helping this was zero rain June-August for fungal issues.

WINEMAKING
The grapes were handpicked and pressed to tank for fermentation. Fermentation was carried out over nine days on skins with frequent pumpovers. A further week on skins post-ferment brought a little more structure and actually softened the tannins of this ripe vintage. The wine was pressed to barrel to age for six months prior to bottling.

TASTING NOTE
Opaque ruby. Smoky black plum, earth and brown sugar on the nose, along with a hint of blackberry liqueur and mint. Sweet fruit, concentrated and yet refreshing, with an attractive note of dark berries and chocolate with lingering acidity. Finishes strong with pronounced tannins.