2008 Chiaromonte "Muro Sant'Angelo" Primitivo Gioia del Colle

SKU #1090736

Primitivo can be a little tricky. As most people are aware, this is the grape that was brought to the Sierra foothills by Italian gold prospectors and became California's Zinfandel. Some Primitivi can have many of Zin's lesser attributes; high alcohol, pruney fruit, complete lack of acidity. But this offering from Tenute Chiamomonte is a stunning example of the grapes potential. Full bodied and extracted to be sure, but with finesse and elegance in abundance. Pretty black cherry, blackberry and super ripe plum aromas and flavors, with spicy overtones and the most subtle hint of barrique. Among the best Primitovo I've ever tasted. Pair with anything you'd normally do with a big Napa Cab or Northern Rhone Syrah. CM, LA Italian wine specialist

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Price: $23.99
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By: Chris Miller | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 5/20/2012 | Send Email
In past reviews, I've probably hinted at if not outright stated that I'm not a huge fan of Zinfandel. Don't get me wrong, I've had some lovely examples of the grape, but many (most?) are just too ripe, too jammy, and too alcoholic for my tastes. To be fair, I'm not a huge fan of Primitivo either, so it's not just my inner italiophile talking here. I must say however, if more Zins were like this, I'd be singing a different tune. This wine has all the deep, rich black and red fruit, clove, pepper and exotic spice that a dyed in the wool Zin lover would expect from their wine, but while full bodied and rich in the mouth, it's stops well short of being ponderous and dull. It retains it's refreshing quality (something we all too often forget; wine is ultimately meant to be a refreshing beverage). That said, this wine is at it's best paired with big, sturdy fair. Anything grilled or roasted, hearty pastas and soups, a hunk of hard, well aged cheese and some crusty bread. FYI, for those who haven't heard, the primitivo grape was brought to California by southern Italian gold prospectors where it was planted in the Sierra foothills and became our Zinfandel. Interestingly enough, primitivo was brought to Italy from present day Croatia, where it's called Plavac. Not sure who brought it to Croatia however. CM

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