Apulia or Puglia, the southernmost part and boot heel of Italy, is not only the home of Primitivo, but the grape variety Negroamaro (black and bitter) is also considered native there. When it comes to rich wines from Italy, it is currently experiencing a resurgence.
Or you could say that the Negroamaro grape has received the accolade. For a long time, the deep-dark red wine from Apulia was just good enough as a blending partner for other red wines. In terms of color, Negroamaro can be used to brighten up many a pale noblesse. However, this practice has died down and is now considered rather frowned upon in Italy. Over time, it has led to a drop in demand and production of Negroamaro in Italy from over 30,000 to just under 20,000 hectares of vineyards. The best known area for Negroamaro is the Salice Salentino DOC region in Puglia, between Lecce and Brindisi. The grape variety has been known there for more than 2,000 years; the ancient Greeks almost certainly brought it with them when they moved to Italy. Its name is self-explanatory: "Negro" describes the deep dark, almost black color and "amaro" stands for the bitter, almond-like taste, which it owes to the abundance of its tannins. In the past, the very high yields meant that they could hardly ripen, but if the tannins are allowed their time to ripen, even the tannins of the Negroamaro become ripe and soft. But just: this means that yields must be minimized and controlled.
The bittersweet aroma comes from the fruit, it is faintly reminiscent of dark chocolate. Overall, this tart, bittersweet red wine impresses with its enormous variety of aromas. The intense sunlight during the day, alternating with the cool sea breezes at night, allow many flavors to develop in the grapes as they ripen. Yes, even we can't explain away the tannins, but that's what makes it stand out from a run-of-the-mill red wine, isn't it? At its best, the Negroamaro grape produces full-bodied wines with character that harmonize with spicy and consistently strong dishes.