To quote the manager of the wine department at my local Trader Joe’s, “this is the best red wine I have under $5.” So clearly I had to give it a try! Although that may not be much of a comparison in most stores, at Trader Joe’s it’s a claim worth considering. Here’s what I found.
Winemaker: Roccadoro (Castellani)
Wine: Grifone Primitivo
Appellation: Puglia, Italy IGT
Price: $4.45 at Trader Joe’s
Notes: I smelled cherry & spice in the bouquet of this medium-bodied red wine from Puglia, Italy in the heel of the boot. On first pour, the chief flavor I tasted was black tea. There was also an underlying dark cherry which started coming to the fore and then brightened into pleasing ripe strawberry and red currant as the wine breathed. It definitely has tannins which give the wine a lingering finish, but I would say they are on the moderate side (esp. by comparison with Zins made here in the U.S.). Speaking of the finish, I tasted a very interesting and haunting spiced orange. Although the label is bright orange in color, I don’t think it was just subliminal suggestion! The wine is 13% alcohol and 100% Primitivo (aka Zinfandel) from old vines. I wanted to find out more about this winery and saw that the folks at Jascots Wine Merchants, a UK wine seller, attribute Grifone Primitivo to Castellani.
Important: I am not a professional sommelier or wine connoisseur. See “About” for the full disclaimer.