You get what you pay for in life…most of the time. At £5.50, this Primitivo shouldn’t be this smooth and quaffable. It’s a strong, dark fruity kinda number, but without being overly heavy, sweet or inky.
For the first time on Supermarket Wine of the Week we have something from the south of the country. This week’s tipple is from Puglia, the heavenly heel of Italy’s boot, and is named after the Primitivo grape. Interestingly, Primitivo is basically identical to what the Americans call Zinfandel (big in California), which developed its own identity over there after being planted in the US in the late 19th century.
The weather in Puglia is hot, and you obviously don’t have the altitude there that you find in the northern Alpine regions. This heat creates grapes with higher levels of sugar and alcohol. Therefore Primitivos can be quite sweet and robust, and the connoisseurs do sometimes turn their noses up at it, dismissing it as a slightly crude grape.
However the reason team Cook Eat Discover likes this bargain bottle of Primitivo is that it’s actually surprisingly dry and well balanced. So back off you Primitivo naysayers, this cheeky chap’s got a bit of class. Ripe and jammy, yet velvety, not overly sweet and with just enough acid to give it a nice structure. And for barely over a fiver!
So what should you drink it with? Hard, tangy cheese like mature cheddar would be a great combo. For a main meal, think barbecue! It is getting warmer after all..head to your local butcher this weekend, pick up some beef or lamb to grill, and enjoy the smokey, charred meat with your Palastri Primitivo in the spring sunshine! You’re welcome ;)