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La Ricolma is made from 100% Merlot grapes especially seclected from prime vineyards and hand-picked when perfectly mature. It is fermented in stainless steel tanks for about 18 days, then racked and pressed. After it is racked once again, the wine is left to mature for 20-22 months in French oak barriques. It is bottled and held for another 6 months before being released.
In 1991 they planted the first 1,000 Merlot vines in their vineyard in Chianti Classico. Their aim was to enrich their Chianti Classico with more weight. The Merlot was planted on high-altitude predominantly south-facing site enjoying good exposure to sun.
They were not pleased with the results with Merlot and it never ended as blended into the Chianti Classico. They decided to bottle it as its own in 1993 vintage and La Ricolma became existent.
First vintage produced: 1993
San Giusto a Rentennano, a name of Etruscan origin, overlooks the upper course of the Arbia river in the farthest south Chianti Classico wine zone. The estate began life as a medieval monastery of Cistercian nuns and was called San Giusto alle Monache ("of the Nuns"). In 1204 it was fortified by the Florentines, after a treaty established it as their boundry with Siena. Only portions of the ancient fortification still stand, its crenellated battlements, massive barbican wall and underground vaults, used today as the ageing cellars for our wines.
The medieval estate of San Giusto a Rentennano came into the Martini di Cigala family through marriage in 1914. In 1957, it was inherited by Enrico Martini di Cigala and in 1992, by his nine children. Today Anna, Lucia, Elisabetta, Francesco, Alessandro and Luca are partners in the estate company.