Estate: Housed in a 16th century castle with medieval foundations once run by Basiliani monks with a long winemaking tradition, Castello Monaci is located along the Adriatic Sea in Puglia, southeastern Italy. The estate is owned and run by Lina Memmo, whose family has owned the property since the 19th century, along with her husband Vitantonio Seracca Guerrieri. The estate is dedicated to a sustainable philosophy of the cultivation of indigenous grapes such as Primitivo, Negroamaro and Malvasia Nera.
Winemaking: Grapes are sourced from certified sustainable estate vineyards. Fermented in stainless steel, followed by 6 months “in the cellar where 25% the wine will rest in French oak and the remainder in stainless steel”. The name ‘Liante’ is the name of the “wind of the Levant” which blows across the Adriatic region.
Tasting Notes: Dark garnet in colour with aromas of dark berries with a shake of crushed pink peppercorn. Inviting blackberry, black cherry, a hint of bitter dark chocolate and smoky herbs culminate in a clean fruit finish with the distinctive bitter edge Negroamaro is renowned for. Rustic and easy drinking, super versatile at the table.
80% Negroamaro, 20% Malvasia Nera di Lecce
Salice Salentino DOC
Bottled in the own cellars by Castello Monaci
Enjoy now thru 2019
Rated 88 points by Wine Spectator
Estate: Giovanni Batista Cantele founded the Cantele winery in 1979 along with his sons Augusto and Domenico. Prior to that, Giovanni was a successful wine broker, purchasing Puglian wines and selling them in northern Italy. Today under the direction of his grandson Gianni Cantele [Augosto’s son], the family estate consists of 50 hectares of vines and an additional 150 hectares owned by other growers that the family manages. The family grows many indigenous grapes such as Primitivo and Negroamaro, along with international varieties like Merlot and Syrah.
Philosophy: “We have always thought of our wines as food”, in that they “offer drinkability and balanced aromas and flavors when paired with dishes at the dinner table”.
Winemaking: Herbicides and pesticides are kept to a minimum, if they are even used at all in the vineyards “in order to raise the quality of the wines”. Aged in 1-2 year old barriques for approximately 6 months.
Tasting Notes: Dark garnet in colour with delightfully earthy aromas of wild berry preserves, garrigue and hints of wildflowers. Tastes rather similar to the aromas, with berry and floral notes providing a delicate edge to the rustic, earthy backbone. Black pepper and leather elements linger on the velvety finish.
Bottled by Cantele Azienda Vinicola
A fantastic value, this is a wonderfully glugable Negroamaro to accompany a wide variety of dishes.
Estate: The Angiuli estate is located in the Salento region of Puglia, southeastern Italy. The estate accompanied by “the passion for the land”, has been passed down from father to son for 3 generations. Donato Angiuli along with his sons Vito and Giuseppe run the family estate today. The family strives to cultivate indigenous varietals that are naturally complimented by the soil and microclimate of their land.
Winemaking: Aged in steel and “placed on the market a month after bottling”.
Tasting Notes: Aromas of fresh berries and earthy hints. Vivid black cherry and blackberry flavours run atop an undercurrent of earth and spice, silky tannins and berry notes comprise the clean finish.
Estate Bottled by Angiuli Donato
Enjoy now thru 2016
Rustic and straightforward, this is a gulpable companion with pizza and pastas.
Estate: Valle Dell’Asso is an 80 hectare family estate located in the Puglia region of southern Italy. Established by Donato Vallone in 1820, the property has been passed down from father to son for generations, today it is headed by Don Gino Vallone. The owl logo of Valle Dell’Asso has its origins in the ancient history of the area and comes from the Greek settlers who depicted the Goddess Athena on their currency with an owl. Gino has a vast art collection of owls, garnered from all over the world that is exhibited in the estate’s wine cellar.
Winemaking: Don Gino Vallone continues “the family tradition that from generation to generation has renewed its agreement with the earth” by practicing organic viticulture and using traditional methods such as hand tilling and harvesting. Aged in cement tanks.
Tasting Notes: Dark red-violet in colour with aromas of cranberry, chocolate and a hint of funk. Bright, tart flavours of morello cherry and red currant ran atop an earthy, mineral undercurrent, whilst chocolate and traces of raisin lingered between each sip.
Estate Bottled by Azienda Agricola Valle Dell’Asso Di Luigi G. Vallone
Straightforward and refreshing, this is a versatile, zippy Rosé.
Winery: Hiso Telaray – Libera Terra Puglia is a cooperative comprised of lands that were seized from criminal organizations in Puglia “with the aim of creating occupational opportunities inspired by the principles of solidarity and lawfulness”. Located in Salento between Brindisi and Lecce, the cooperative’s 30 hectares of vineyards have become recognised for their excellent, character driven Negroamaro and Primitivo wines.
Winemaking: The vineyards are over 30 years old and are cultivated traditionally and organically. The grapes for Alberelli De La Santa Negroamaro Rosato were sourced from a vineyard with “loose, sandy reddish soils of iron and limestone”. This Rosato is dedicated to Michele Fazi and Gaetano Marchitelli, young men from Bari that were killed by a criminal organisation.
Tasting Notes: Cherry red with coral highlights in colour, with aromas of strawberry, rain-washed stone and orange blossom. Strawberry, bright citrus, and clean minerals culminated in a crisp finish of light orange zest and gingery spice.
Bottled by conto di Terre di Puglia Libera Terra Soc. Coop. Soc.
Enjoy now thru 2015