Puglia is a wine region on the 'heel' of Italy's boot. Olives and grapes dominate the countryside, and the region supplies almost half of Italy's olive oil production, as well as a great quantity of red wine made from Primitivo and Negroamaro
The region of Puglia (Apulia) is located on the Adriatic coast and consists of three provinces: Bari, Brindisi and Taranto. It has an area of 15,000 km² and a population of 1.5 million people.
Apulia is the largest region and the one with the greatest coastal development, with a coastline of approximately 865 km. The coastline alternates between rocky stretches, cliffs (sheer rocky coastlines) and sandy shores.
The wines of Apulia are very popular in Italy. They have a long and rich history dating back to 600 BC. The history of Apulian wine begins in 1303 when it was first mentioned in an Italian poem by Jacopo da Lentini.
This area is predominantly hot, dry and typically has a landscape dominated by olive trees. The soil here consists of sandstone and limestone, which act as natural preservatives for the grapes.
The wine produced in this region is the result of hot summers and relatively little rainfall at this time of year.
The history of Apulian wine began in 1303 when it was first mentioned in an Italian poem by Jacopo da Lentini. From then on, the popularity of this drink has only grown with time.
Primitivo di Manduria is probably the best-known red wine of Apulia. Ruby red in colour, it is usually matured for five years before being released onto the market. It has a smooth taste with rich berry aromas and just enough acidity to balance it well with food.
There are definitely more black grape varieties than white varieties in Apulia. The most common black grape varieties in Apulia are Negro Amaro, Primitivo, Uva di Troia, Malvasia Nera (from Lecce and Brindisi), Montepulciano, Sangiovese, Aglianico, Aleatico, Bombino Nero, Susumaniello and Ottavianello.
The white wines are mainly produced from indigenous vines, such as Bombino Bianco, Malvasia Bianca, Verdeca, Bianco d'Alessano and Pampanuto. Also significant are Fiano, Moscato Bianco and Chardonnay, which, despite being a grape that has no 'historical' links with Apulia, is one of the most widely grown white grapes in the region.
Apulian cuisine reflects the history and geography of this land, which has seen centuries of invasion and occupation by different cultures. It was influenced by the ancient Greeks and Romans, who introduced unique vegetables such as aubergines (eggplants) to Apulia; then followed the influence of the Arabs who brought with them spices such as cinnamon and rice; then came the Norman invaders who introduced new varieties of beans; finally, Angevin-Aragonese domination gave Apulian dishes a Spanish touch.
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