2016 Guttarolo 'Amphora' Primitivo
Though Puglia doesn’t necessarily conjure imagery of spectacular wines, the cool limestone ridge on which Cristiano Guttarolo’s property sits is uniquely placed to offer unique and interesting wines. It isn’t named Gioia del Colle, or “Jewel of the Hill”, for no reason. Strong sea breezes cool the property but do not harm it, while its exposure to the sun ensures the steady ripening of its fruit.
Guttarolo has been here since 2004 and while he remains mostly dedicated to Primitivo, Puglia’s star-studded black grape, he farms a number of indigenous varieties across his seven hectare holdings, all organically. He planted everything himself, so he has a unique relationship with this plot of land, and an inherent understanding of its beauty and occasional follies.
This wine is 100% Primitivo. It is from the oldest of Guttarolo's vines, up to about 25 years now. The wine is fermented in tank with natural yeasts and zero sulfur and aged in 500-litre clay amphora sealed with wax for a year; it is bottled without fining, filtration or sulfur. While Pugliese reds are noted for their sun-drenched ripeness, richness, akin to more traditional Barossan Shiraz, this Primitivo is bunchy, fresh, with boundless energy. There is an undergrowth note, that tames the fruit and makes you feel like you’re walking through an ancient castle, cool walls and history around you.