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Italy's Primitivo grape, the basis for this juicy red, is actually the same variety as Zinfandel, which expains its supple, familiar flavors.
What You Need To Know
One way to ferret out the best vineyards in an old European town is to ask which ones used to belong to monks: The church had a habit of laying claim to the best winegrowing spots in villages all over Italy, France, Germany and beyond. The vineyards at Tenuta Zicari, the Puglian estate responsible for this plummy Primitivo, have been owned by the Zicari family since the late 1800s, but the property was first planted with grapevines by Cistercian monks back in the 12th century. The grape's affinity for this sea-cooled slice of southern Italy is recognized by the official winegrowing zone of Primitivo di Manduria. Winemaker Roberto Bruschi creates this version using grapes from a single vineyard, Calabrìgo, then ages the wine in French oak barrels to yield a deeply fruity cuvée.
Clove-spiked plum and black cherry scents.
Soft and pleasingly plump, with plenty of acidity to brighten ripe plum flavors.
Cellar temperature--the bottle should be cool to the touch.
Barbecued anything, plus steaks, stews and roasts.