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Resources.

Avignonesi Merlot Desiderio 750ML 2008
Sku: 20356
Avignonesi is one of the oldest wineries in Italy. Like many historic estates, the origins of this emblematic winery parallel the movements of the Catholic Church. In 1377, when Pope G ...more
Product Rating
Critics Ratings:   (1)
Product Information
Country: Italy
Region: Tuscany
Sub-Region: Toscano
Grape Varietal: Merlot
Type: Still wine
Reg. $59.99
Buy Avignonesi Merlot Desiderio
A graceful and elegant effort that offers clear expressions of red fruit layered over notes of earth, mocha and sweet spices. Silky tannins and lively acidity all work in balance on the long and persistent finish.
Wine Spectator 91 points - A black cherry flavor is at the center of this red, surrounded by vanilla, smoke and spice notes. This will take a year or so to absorb the oak, while the finish is fresh and long. Merlot. Best from 2014 through 2023. 7,000 cases made. –BS  (Oct 31 2012)

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Avignonesi is one of the oldest wineries in Italy. Like many historic estates, the origins of this emblematic winery parallel the movements of the Catholic Church. In 1377, when Pope Gregory XI moved the papal residence from Avignon, France back to Rome, one of the noble families who followed him to Italy eventually settled in Montepulciano, Tuscany and founded Avignonesi. Although it’s not quite clear when the family built the cellars, they are the foundation for Palazzo Avignonesi which was built in the mid-16th century. The recent renaissance of Avignonesi coincides with two milestones. When the Falvo brothers bought the property in 1974, they not only invested in much needed repairs, but also redirected monies to improving viticulture and promoting indigenous varieties. In 2009, when Belgian businesswoman and minority stakeholder Virginie Saverys gained full control of the property, she immediately instigated a detailed geographical study of the property to discover the potential of this terroir. The results revealed previously unknown and important facts regarding soil diversity. Armed with this knowledge, Virginie and her team evaluated the unique characteristics of each parcel to determine the most suitable farming, vinification, pruning and planting methods. Under the watchful stewardship of the winemaking team, all 345 acres are hand-picked and farmed organically. The estate has applied for official certification. Today Avignonesi owns seven different properties, all of which sit at nearly 1,000 feet above sea level. The largest holding, Le Capezzine, is divided into four parcels – La Stella, La Verginie, Vigna Sperimentale and the iconic Vigna Tonda (round vineyard). Other parcels in the Montepulciano area include El Grasso, Banditella, La Bodelle and I Pogetti which provide the grapes for Vino Nobile di Montepulciano. The La Selva and La Lombarda parcels are located in Cortona and planted with Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc. The impact of origin in the creation of flavor is a fundamental premise to the minimalist winemaking philosophy at Avignonesi. Just as Vino Nobile di Montepulciano and Vin Santo are considered benchmarks for their categories so are the efforts of Virginie and her team as they strive to produce wines that offer authentic and inimitable expressions of terroir, vintage and variety.
Technical notes
(85% Merlot/15% Cabernet Sauvignon). Fruit from the best lots of Merlot from the La Selva estate and Cabernet from La Lombarda estate was macerated on its skins for 4-5 weeks in oak, and aged for 24 months in new French barriques (35% new).

Producer
Established in the mid-16th century, Avignonesi is one of the oldest wineries in Italy. Like many other noble estates, its early history paralleled the movements of the Catholic Church. When Pope Gregory XI moved the papal residence from France to Italy in 1377, one of the families who followed him eventually settled in Montepulciano, Tuscany and founded Avignonesi. More recently, two other families have driven the renaissance of this venerable brand. In 1974, when the Falvo brothers bought the property, they significantly invested in viticulture, in particular the development and promotion of indigenous varietals. After minority stakeholder Virginie Saverys gained full control of the estate in 2009, she began two long-term projects. The first was to introduce organic farming and viticulture practices. As of 2012, the estate is fully organic and has applied for certification. She also partnered with the University of Bordeaux to conduct a detailed topography and soil analysis, the results of which are used to customize pruning, planting and vinification decisions for each parcel. Avignonesi owns 345 acres, which are divided into seven different properties and are situated at nearly 1,000 feet above sea level. The largest holding, Le Capezzine is comprised of a traditional vinsantaia and four different plots, (I Poggetti, Le Badelle, El Grasso and Banditella vineyards) which provide the grapes for the Vino Nobile di Montepulciano. The La Selva and La Lombarda parcels are located in Cortona and planted with Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc. Under the watchful stewardship of the winemaking team, the vineyards are farmed organically and all of Avignonesi’s wines are made using estate fruit. The impact of origin in the creation of flavor is a driving premise behind the minimalist winemaking philosophy at Avignonesi. Just as Vino Nobile di Montepulciano and Vin Santo are considered benchmarks for its category so are the efforts of Virginie and her team as they strive to produce wines that offer authentic and inimitable expressions of terroir, vintage and varietal.

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