Puglia is the second largest wine growing region in Italy, after the Veneto, producing over six hundred million litres of wine per year. In total, there are 85,000 hectares of vineyards stretching across the region, now producing 32 DOC wines and 4 DOCG wines.
Puglia wine making can be divided geographically into three areas: Foggia in the north, Bari and Taranto in the middle and Brindisi and Lecce in the south. The 'Nero di Troia' grape is found in the province of Foggia and and down into the northern part of the province of Bari, and produces a number of DOC wines. However, many would consider that the real 'Pugliese' wine can be found in the southern part of the region, below the Brindisi - Taranto line. Whereas the northern part of Puglia uses grapes such as Sangiovese and Montepulciano, which are also found in central and northern Italy, the southern grapes, Negroamaro and Primitivo, create the rich, full-bloodied reds that the region is famous for.
The best of Puglia's Negroamaro wines come from the Salento area, including the Salice Salentino DOC wines. The warm, dry, Mediterranean climate in this area provides near-perfect conditions for the vines to thrive. The rather strange name is sometimes attributed to a description of the taste i.e. dark and bitter, or sometimes related to the area's Ancient Greek influences and a reference to the colour of the grapes.
Primitivo is found in two main areas within Puglia. The first is in the province of Taranto, where the wine 'Primitivo di Manduria' is produced. The other is in the province of Bari, in the hilly area of Gioia del Colle. In total, the vines are grown on 11,000 hectares. The word, 'Primitivo' comes from the Latin 'primativus', meaning 'first to ripen'.
Historically, Puglia has always been associated with red wines, but over the last 10 years, white and rosé wines have been steadily increasing in importance for the region. The white grape varieties include: fiano, verdeca, malvasia bianca, and bombino bianco. The rosé wines tend to be made from Negroamaro or primitivo grapes.
Castel del Monte Bombino Nero
Castel del Monte Nero di Troia Riserva
Castel del Monte Rosso Riserva
Primitivo di Manduria Dolce Naturale
Aleatico di Puglia (All provinces)
Cacc'e mmitte di Lucera (Foggia)
Castel del Monte (Bari)
Colline Joniche Taratine (Taranto)
Gioia del Colle (Bari)
Locorotondo (Bari - Brindisi)
Martina (Bari - Brindisi - Taranto)
Moscato di Trani (Bari - Foggia)
Negroamaro di Terra d'Otranto (Lecce)
Orta Nova (Foggia)
Primitivo di Manduria (Brindisi - Taranto)
Rosso Canosa (Bari)
Salice Salentino (Brindisi - Lecce)
San Severo (Foggia)
Squinzano (Brindisi - Lecce)
Tavoliere delle Puglie (Foggia - Barletta-Andria-Trani)
Terra d'Otranto (Brindisi - Lecce - Taranto)