When anyone raises a glass that contains a deep, rich and red wine, it is very often a Primitivo
. The classic varietal of this wine is high in both tannins and alcohol content. The tannins are what give it the beautiful and vibrant colour, which could even inspire poetry. The alcohol content of most Primitivo wines is reduced to about 14% by the time it reaches the table. However, fortified versions, such as the liquoroso variety, can have an alcohol content as high as 18%. Primitivo wines exhibit a certain bitterness in their flavour, in addition to the intense mouth-puckering effect of its tannins. Therefore, it is best to age these wines for a few years in the bottle or barrel before consumption. In terms of food pairings, Primitivo goes well with strong flavours found in a typical Puglian lamb spit-roast, as well as with any smoked meat, or even with vegetarian dishes such as beetroot curry or lentils stewed in wine.