The challenge to choose a name that can represent us
What's your name? It's the first question even children ask one another when they meet. As for people, also for a product the name is what identifies it in front of others, it is the business card with which to introduce oneself. And choosing one is never easy!
A TORTUOUS PATH BETWEEN RULES AND PASSION
Do you know those endless battles around the kitchen table, accompanied by surveys among relatives and friends, internet searches and amazing statistics? Just like with children, when creating a company or a product there comes the crucial moment of choosing the name and in product naming the "rules" and guidelines are the most varied: "Be descriptive; keep it short and incisive; make it easy to say; make it pleasant to listen to; use real words; make up words; "verbify" the name; search for specific names; be symbolic; and so on."
We analyzed all these rules, we looked at dozens and dozens of names, we compared and reflected, but in the end, even in this aspect, what constantly returned in our reasoning was a very rooted territorial identity. And this is what prevailed. Our beers are linked to our history. And our history is also made by its great women.
IRIS, GIULITTA E CATHARINA
Our first three beers have in fact the name of three main women of our region: IRIS, whose name is a tribute to the writer Iris Origo, author of "war in Val d'Orcia", and considered by many one of the "mothers" of the Val d'Orcia landscape; GIULITTA which is a reference to the Patron Saint of San Quirico d'Orcia, saint Quirico’s mother who gives the name to the town; and finally CATHARINA which takes its name from Catherine of Siena, the saint who lived between Siena and the Val d'Orcia in the 14th century.
IRIS AND THE VAL D'ORCIA: A STORY OF LOVE AND DEDICATION
IRIS is above all a tribute to a woman who had a bond with this territory than was stronger than her own roots.
"It was on a stormy October afternoon in 1923, forty-seven years ago ???? wrote Iris in her autobiography Immagini e Ombre, in 1970 ???? that we saw for the first time the Val d'Orcia and what would become our home. [...]. We knew what we were looking for: a place that required enough work to fill our lives, but also, we hoped, a place of a certain beauty.”
The Marchesa Origo, a lady of great sensitivity and flexibility, illustrious biographer, writer, scholarly historian, organizer of educational and social initiatives, was undoubtedly one of the most interesting figures of the Italian and European cultural scene of the 1900’s.
Iris Margater Cutting, an only child, divides her childhood between the house of her American grandparents in New York and that of her Anglo-Irish grandparents in Great Britain and spends her youth in her mother's villa, Villa Medici in Fiesole, one of the most spectacular Florentine villas.
Brilliant writer and scholar of Italian history, in 1924 she married an Italian, the Marquis Antonio Origo and together they moved to their new estate La Foce, near Chianciano Terme, which at the time was a place in a state of total neglect and that didn’t even have an access road. However, through a great deal of hard work, care and passion, they turned it into in a beautiful villa along with a solid agricultural organization and an exceptional garden built under the guidance of the English architect Cecil Pinsent between 1925 and 1939.
Once settled in Val d'Orcia, the Origos began to bring the lands they had just purchased to new life. In fifteen years of hard work, they built fifty farms, each 40 hectares, all grouped around the central farm where Iris and Antonio lived and where decisions were made on which types of harvest and cultivation techniques to adopt for such lands.
With the arrival of World War II, many things changed. An intense period began for the Origos. In January 1943, following the evacuation of several children from some Italian cities, like Genoa and Turin, the Origos welcomed more than twenty of them in their home in La Foce to save them from the bombings,. Some were orphans; others had been sent by their parents to Val d'Orcia which appeared to provide a safe haven. One of the school buildings was transformed to house them. "We have been able to return to their parents, safe and sound, all the displaced children who have been entrusted to us," wrote Iris in War in Val d'Orcia. Diary 1943-1944 (Editrice Le Balze, Montepulciano – Siena).
As Patrizia Mari writes in La forza tranquilla. Stories and images of Chianciano Terme through its women, «But the work done by Iris and Antonio Origo, in the twenties and thirties will never be forgotten, the same way their infinite love for these places and the people who loved her will never be forgotten …"
And we remember her every day.