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Primitivo

Primitivo is a typical wine from Southern Italy, Puglia in particular, with two famous varieties; Primitivo di Manduria, in Salento, and Gioia del Colle Primitivo. In this category you will find the best Primitivos for your dinner with friends, or for a simple family lunch. Discover the selection and choose the perfect wine!
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This wine has been awarded by the Gambero Rosso Guide.

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Primitivo

History and territory 

Primitivo is one of the main red wines of Puglia, produced in the Primitivo di Manduria DOC zone, in the Taranto area, and Gioia del Colle, in the province of Bari, and throughout the region. The name of the variety derives from its early ripening,which leads to it being harvested early, between late August and early September. It seems that this wine originated in Croatia, and was then brought to Puglia by the Phoenicians or the Greeks. Here it later spread throughout the region, especially in Manduria. A very close relationship has been found between this wine and the Californian Zinfandel, which may have been spread to America thanks to some migrants from Puglia during the nineteenth century. 

Grapes, land and production 

Primitivo vines are grown on clay and limestone soil and it is the saltiness that comes from the sea makes this wine so mineral and firm, distinctive and irresistible. Primitivo di Manduria is grown in municipalities in the province of Taranto and Brindisi, where bush vines are widespread. These can reach up to 80 years of age, and produce low yields in terms of quantity but exceptional quality. In the production area of Gioia del Colle, on the other hand, a different biotype is grown from that seen in Manduria. 

Characteristics and aromas 

Primitivo is known in the wine world for its high alcohol content, which permits long ageing. In the glass it shows an intense ruby red hue with purplish reflections and a high sugar content. Its focused sensory characteristics show berry fruit, spice, vanilla and tobacco. On the palate it is round, soft and often sweetish. Primitivo’s two DOC wines show subtle differences: Gioia del Colle Primitivo shows mineral notes and greater elegance; Primitivo di Manduria is usually more intense and full-bodied. There is also the Primitivo di Manduria Dolce Naturale version, which involves partially drying the grapes to create a sweet, raisin wine, perfect as a “vino da meditazione”. 

Primitivo and traditional dishes 

Due to its firm structure and generous body, Primitivo goes well with rich, hearty dishes. It is the perfect wine to accompany main courses of grilled or stewed red meat. Its tannin content also makes it a good pairing for cured meats or mature cheeses