(2023) 100% Negroamaro from the prized appellation of Salice Salentino in Puglia, the 'heel' of Italy. This weighs in with a relatively lightweight 13% alcohol, which for Puglia, is modest. That gives this wine a certain freshness, and it has a palish ruby colour to match. Herb, cherry and stony aromas are breezy and savoury, but there is sweetness of fruit too. In the mouth it is quite racy, a bittersweet twist of Pontefract-cake liquorice to the red plum juicy fruit. Nicely done, no attempt at being a 'blockbuster', but food-friendly and well-balanced.
(2022) An unusual cross-regional blend from Abruzzo (Montepulciano and Sangiovese) and Puglia (Primitivo and Negroamaro) that sees ageing in both French and American oak. Dark and saturated, with a vinous, dark cherry and plum character, a classy touch of oak adding some spice and cocoa. Very pure and ripe fruit, supple and plush, the tannins are fine and chocolaty, the cherry-ripe acidity balances, in a very classy wine at an attractive price.
(2020) This is a classic Primitivo from Salento in Puglia, and a particularly bold and juicy example emphasising the exuberant dark fruit profile of the wine. Spices, damson plum and blackcurrant on the nose suggests a certain plushness, and that's borne out on the palate, where a creamy weight of black fruit and supple texture fill the mouth, great sweetness to the fruit, but a very nicely sour and savoury edge of bittersweetness: plum skins and tangy orange acids, the chocolaty tannins and six months in oak barrels adding even more smoothness to the finish. Great value here.
(2014) Puglia is the source of this 13.5% abv Negroamaro. It is creamy, tight stuff, with a touch of raisin and a touch of currant dryness. Spices and lift are lovely, with a juiciness and taut freshness to the wine. A little extra fudge-like sweetness and depth on the finish, and very good quality overall - long and sweet to the last.
(2011) Barone Pizzini is in fact a northern Italian winery, though this wine comes from their Tenuta del Barco estate at the opposite end of the country, in Puglia. It has a vivid crimson/purple colour and a nose that is equally bright and fleshily full, though it is fruit rather than oak that dominates with spiced cherry scents. On the palate this wine has an intense streak of liquoricy concentration: some of Primitivo's almost floral charm comes through, but the solid core of fruit and a beefy underpinning of discreet oak and tannin adds lots of ballast here. A chewy but never heavy wine, crying out for a chunk of beef or lamb.