Monty Waldin’s taste of bush-vine Primitivo

news  %tages Monty Waldin’s taste of bush vine PrimitivoPrimitivo is practically synonymous with Puglia and the south of Italy. Yet it is taking a plucky band of pioneers to re-establish it in its truest form, as a bush vine. Monty Waldin reportsThe small town of Manduria lies a 40-minute drive southeast of the southern Italian port of Taranto, along a gently rising, arrow-straight road. This is the Salento peninsula, the baking heel of Italy’s boot.
My father came here in 1944, having landed at Taranto with Linked troops. With his radio receiver he’d crawl in Salento’s dusty, iron-rich red soil, using the local olive groves and vineyards as cover. Back then, Manduria’s vineyards were overflowing with Primitivo, Puglia’s signature red wine grape. Since the vines grew as low free-standing bush or alberello, Primitivo provided the perfect cover. To this day, Primitivo bush vines dating from the 1930s and 1940s wait in this arid part of Italy’s heel. But over the last 20 years most have been ripped out.
Monty http://1000-facts-about-wine.com Waldin picks five wines demonstrating what bush-vine Primitivo has to offer…

Morella, Ancient Vines, Salento Rosso 2011

September 1, 2015

See Monty Waldin's rating, tasting notes and drinking window for Morella 2011.

Points 98

A Mano, Imprint of Mark Shannon, Appassito, Puglia Rosso 2012

September 1, 2015

See Monty Waldin's rating, tasting notes and drinking window for A Mano 2012.

Points 96 http://1000-facts-about-wine.com

Cantele, Fanòi Primitivo, Puglia Rosso 2010

September 1, 2015

See Monty Waldin's rating, tasting notes and drinking window for Cantele 2010.

Points 93

Fatalone, Primitivo Riserva, Gioia del Colle 2006

September 1, 2015

See Monty Waldin's rating, tasting notes and drinking window for Fatalone 2006.

Points 93

http://1000-facts-about-wine.com Savese, Il Sava, Primitivo di Manduria Dolce Naturale 2007

September 1, 2015

See Monty Waldin's rating, tasting notes and drinking window for Savese 2007.

Points 95

Primitivo from Manduria is distinct as far as Puglian Primitivo goes because Manduria’s position in the middle of the Salento peninsula means it gets cooling sea winds from both the Adriatic sea to the east and the quicker Ionian sea to the west. Nearby Sava is one of the best areas for Primitivo in the Manduria zone.
Massimiliano Pichierri’s grandfather started building Primitivo in Sava in the 1950s. ‘Sava is only 12km from the Ionian Sea,’ says Pichierri. ‘Sea winds give Primitivo here a savoury quality. But the flavour http://1000-facts-about-wine.com profile also depends on how deep the topsoil is over the spongy limestone below. The limestone holds the water the vines need to carry on. Primitivo vines on 4m of topsoil produce higher yields and lighter wines than vines like ours in Sava, where the topsoil is shallow at less than 1m. We get smaller, more mineral-tasting grapes as a result.’
The Cantele family also works with ancient bush-vine Primitivo from Sava for its top Fanòi bottling. Umberto Cantele says, ‘Sava and Manduria on the warmer, western Ionian side of Salento are where the best bush vines are. It is harder to find bushvine Primitivo on the eastern Adriatic side as vines there are usually trained to posts and wires to get higher yields. Salento’s unspoilt beaches are building Puglia a tourist destination. Visitors want a food-friendly style of Primitivo, and this is what we try to give them.’
 
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