Castello Monaci Aiace Salice Salentino Riserva 2012
About the Region
In recent years, the wines of southern Italy, and particularly those of Puglia (also called Apulia) and Campania, have become increasingly popular in the United States and worldwide. Puglia is the so-called "heel" of the Italian boot. It produces ripe, earthy red wines from such grapes as negroamaro (whose name means bitter black), primitivo (which is in effect zinfandel), and nero di Troia. The best whites, fruity and honeyed, are made from fiano and bombino. The wines of Campania were popularized in the U.S. by Mastroberardino; these include distinctive, herbaceous whites made from such grapes as fiano, falanghina, and greco di tufo, and an excellent, refined red called taurasi, made from aglianico grapes. The evocatively named lacryma christi ("tears of Christ"), from Mount Vesuvius, is made in both white and red versions, from local grape varieties. Calabria — the so-called "toe" of the Italian boot — produces mostly earthy red wines, made primarily from a local variety called gaglioppo. The small region of Basilicata produces an appropriately small amount of wine, most famously the rich, ripe aglianico del vulture.