Apollonio Valle Cupa Salento Rosso IGT 2001
Somewhat off the traditional vinous road through Italy lies Apulia, a region in southeastern Italy within which one can find the Salento Rosso IGT. Essentially the heel of Italy’s boot, Salento is an extremely dry region, with almost no precipitation in the summer and only about 500mm of rain per year. However, the limestone bedrock is permeable and therefore the region has abundant groundwater despite its dryness. It’s an interesting region that most have likely never heard of and producer Apollonio is doing a fine job using indigenous grapes but producing in a fairly international style.
This particular wine is a blend of 50% primitivo (aka zinfandel) and 50% negroamaro, an indigenous grape. The nose was surprisingly modern with ripe cherries, chocolate, nuts, earth and baking spices. The fruit character was extremely rich, and yet more earthy and spicy than many zinfandels from the US. The palate was very interesting with cherry, blackberry, earth and mushroom. This was full bodied, but held solid acidity and certainly was very food friendly. Despite its internationalism, there is certainly a sense of ‘terroir’ here and interesting underlying characteristics that are more old than new world, such as the earthy components and higher acidity. This is a hybrid wine style that is absolutely fantastic value and worth seeking out.
Very Good+ and Highly Recommended Value
$20 at BCLDB