Saint Martin and Marzemino
Saint Martin is celebrated all over Italy with different local traditions. In Veneto Saint Martin is closely associated with the tapping of new wine, the reward of the recent harvest. The legend says that Martin, a Roman soldier in the year 335, ripped his cloak in half to cover a half-naked merchant and shield him from the cold. Shortly thereafter, Martin saw the merchant transform and assume the appearance of Jesus, prompting him to convert to Christianity.
In the Euganean Hills, Saint Martin associates with autumn colours, cool evenings, chestnuts and Marzemino. The vines slowly enter vegetative rest, shedding their leaves and covering the vineyards with fallen foliage. In our winery, the activities started after the harvest draw to a close. Everything slows down waiting for the arrival of winter.
The history of Marzemino between past and present
Marzemino appeared in Italy around the 15th century thanks to the trade by sea of the Republic of Venice, and quickly spread in Veneto, Trentino and Lombardy. Its name derives from “Marzarimen”, from the Latin “March grain”, because of the small size of its berries.
Traditionally, in Veneto and in the Euganean Hills Marzemino was characterized by a slight sugary residue and peppy bubbles produced during refermentation in bottle. Dry vinification of this grape generates a pleasant aromaticity, which combines with a light and fresh sip making it a wine suitable for a snack with bread and salami or a plate of grilled salami.
The grapes of Marzemino feature a thin and resistant skin ideally suited for drying. Several years ago, we made the unusual choice of drying Marzemino grapes before vinification, which produced an intense and spicy wine, that still stands as a testament to our desire to experiment.
Saint Martin: chestnuts and Marzemino
“On Saint Martin’s day, chestnuts and wine”. This is how an old saying goes, reporting the tradition of consuming chestnuts with new wine during this festivity. In the past, November 11th was a very important date in the rural calendar, starting the agricultural rest and the renewal of agricultural contracts.
Every version of our Marzemino pleasantly pairs with the autumn flavours. With chestnuts, which are a must for the “summer of Saint Martin”, we recommend the Marzemino Passito or the re-fermented one. The choice is yours!