Marolo Grappa Brunello - Spirits
The Angel’s Share
The distillers of antiquity were faced with a mystery. Why was it that from a cask full of spirit they ended up with one which might have lost half its total volume? Lacking scientific knowledge, they believed the loss was the portion that nature gave to the guardian angels, the protectors who watched over people’s lives and work.
In fact, the angels’ share is the result of transpiration in the casks and the fact that controlled-temperature cellars were not used for the ageing of spirits. In warm, damp places, the alcohol tends to evaporate faster, meaning that the distillate loses a little of its initial alcohol content. On the other hand, a drier and cooler atmosphere will tend to make more water evaporate, concentrating the overall alcohol content.
The angels’ share is certainly not an infinitesimal loss. Depending on climate conditions, ambient moisture and the size of the casks (the smaller they are, the more contact the spirit has with the wood, and therefore the greater the transpiration), it’s estimated that every year the angels’ share is somewhere between 2 and 4% of the total. Statistical calculations have shown that in Scotland, every 365 days 110 million liters of whisky disappear; that’s 44 olympic swimming pools!
A twenty-year-old grappa can lose up to 40% of its volume. This is why from time to time the distillers have to decant the casks and top them up. And for the same reason, a young spirit will be very different to one that’s been aged for a long time, since the latter – for good or for evil – will have made far more cherubs drunk!
The Devil’s Cut
If the angels get their share, the devil also demands his. The expression “the devil’s cut” refers to the loss of distillate which is absorbed by the wood of the casks. In this case, since it is not evaporation, the devil’s cut does not affect the alcohol content of the product, but depends solely on the porosity of the wood used.
Pomace: Sangiovese from Brunello
Made with the pomaces of Brunello di Montalcino, from Tuscany. Clear in appearance, with a perfume that is delicate, fresh and floral. The flavor is soft and elegant, corresponding optimally to the enticing aromas.
Available in 375ml