My sister stopped over the other afternoon excited yet absolutely stressed after signing the paperwork for a new car, so we decided to raise a glass in celebration and to de-stress. Considering her love of Italian wine and Zinfandel, I gave a pour to Leone de Castris Villa Santera Primitivo di Manduria 2009. Founded in 1665 by Duke Oronzo, Earl of Lemos, the Leone de Castris family operates the oldest winery in Puglia. Headed today by Piernacola Leone de Castris, the family estate is credited with the invention of the famed Salice Salentino wine over 50 years ago by Piernacola’s grandfather. They even have a delightful museum on the estate honoring the 350 years of tradition and innovation the family has achieved. Although not certified organic, they emphasise respect for the land and employ all organic practices with zero use of chemicals.
Garnet with brick edges, aromas of dried flowers, forest, warm spices and sour cherry swirled about in the glass. Black cherry, blackberry and hints of sour cherry were underscored by an earthy sensibility in the medium to full body. Red pepper heat joined candied ginger, raisin and wisps of smoke on the lengthy finish. Packed with dense fruit, zesty spice and a lovely lingering sweetness, this makes for a lively companion at the table.
100% Primitivo [Zinfandel]
Bottled by Antica Azienda Vitivinicola Dei Conti Leone de Castris srl, Salice Salentino
Enjoy now thru 2014
Rated 90 points by the Wine Advocate