Puglia – The Block High Heel and Achilles of Italy’s Boot

Puglia – The Block High Heel and Achilles of Italy’s Boot

Puglia is a region in Southern Italy with the Adriatic Sea on its east border, the Ionian Sea on its southeast border and finally the Strait of Otranto and Gulf of Taranto to the south border.

The southern Salento peninsula forms the heel of the boot itself. Puglia has a diverse landscape and half of Italy’s olive oil comes from this region. The area is known for dry heat yielding a warm climate with quite fertile soil where much will grow. The cool breezes off the Mediterranean moderate vineyard temperatures allowing grapes to ripen with a good balance of acid and sugar.  

Puglia is a region in Southern Italy with the Adriatic Sea on its east border, the Ionian Sea on its southeast border and finally the Strait of Otranto and Gulf of Taranto to the south border. The southern Salento peninsula forms the heel of the boot itself. Puglia has a diverse landscape and half of Italy’s olive oil comes from this region. The area is known for dry heat yielding a warm climate with quite fertile soil where much will grow. The cool breezes off the Mediterranean moderate vineyard temperatures allowing grapes to ripen with a good balance of acid and sugar.

While some white wines and some rosés are produced in Puglia, the region is known for its fruity and ripe red wines available at value prices. The red grapes that are most famous in this region are Negroamaro and Primitivo.
 
Negroamaro is native to Southern Italy and grown mostly in Puglia. Wines made from this grape are full-bodied but not overly tannic nor acidic with prominent fruit flavors. Tasting a Negroamaro like San Marzano Salento Negroamaro Il Pumo 2017, you will find an unoaked wine with flavors of black currant, anise and thyme. This wine will pair well roasted meats, pizza and hard cheeses.

Primitivo is a dark-skinned grape that produced deeply colored inky wines. The grape probably arrived in its current home of Puglia from across the Adriatic Sea from Croatia where it is known as Tribidrag
and Crljenak Kaštelanski. It also found its way to United States in the 19th Century as Zinfandel. There is some controversy over their identities, but the grapes are most definitely very closely related if not the same. Cantele Salento Primitivo 2015 displays aromas and flavors of fig, cherries, and raspberries. This wine will pair well with rich meat sauces, grilled or roasted meats, burgers and hard cheese.

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