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Get Ready for Springtime Wines from Puglia

By Maureen Rooney, Wine Consultant Extraordinaire , Siesta Key Wines

Spring is finally here and so are the great wines from the past year’s harvest. Discovering new wines is exciting, but this time, we hit the jackpot!  How can one winery make so many really, really good wines?

This past month we were honored to have one of Italy’s top winemakers showcase his wines at our shop, Siesta Key Sieseta Key Wines 2Wines, and provide an educational tasting and discussion for us and our customers.  The Winemaker, Mr. Facundo Jarequi, explained how the traditions of his territory, combined with new technology and innovations in winemaking, have made Cantine Teanum a National and International Awarding Winning Winery.

Teanum is located in the town of San Paolo di Civitate in the Puglia region of South Italy. The land is hilly and basks in the strong breezes off the Adriatic Sea making it an ideal area for producing wines and olive oils.  Teanum has several levels of wines in their portfolio, and although you may find and taste many of them in our wine shop, the following wines are our favorites for our Spring Collection.

First is the Favugne line which means a sweet, hot and dry wind that comes from the southeast. Our favorite white wine is the Bombino-Trebbiano which is a yellowish wine with an intense bouquet of ripe fruits.  A fresh wine with a good minerality compliments fish and seafood. Excellent used as a first course starter wine or with a main course. Scallops, flounder, crab, shrimp or swai is a great choice for this wine.

Also, one of my very favorites is the Rosato. Rosato is an Italian rosé. Yes Sarasota, I will get you to understand rosé’s if it’s the last thing I do! This is 100% Montepulciano. You will know Montepulciano from the red version that goes great with pizza and pasta. This Montepulciano rosé is best when you don’t want the acidity of a white wine or the heaviness of a red, but you still want something refreshing like a white and full of the rich flavor of a red that won’t weigh you down in Florida’s humidity. Rosé’s are really the best of both worlds, are a little non-committal and show you that you really can have your cake and eat it too! The most important point to remember is that this wine is nothing like White Zinfandel and most rosé’s are not, but they are actually the perfect wine for Florida’s climate and lifestyle. This wine gives you all of the flavor you want in a red without making you warm and sluggish in Florida’s weather.  The Teanum Rosato has a large bouquet and is full of fresh, rich flavors of berries and hints of spice. This Rosato is excellent with seafood, fowl and the Siesta Key sunset!

The next line of wines is the Alta, and the Falanghina is our chardonnay replacement wine. Made of 100% Falanghina, this straw colored wine offers flavors of warm fruits and vanilla.  This wine is excellent with grilled chicken or even crab.  A more rounded body with more smoothness and less minerality than the Bombino.

Second in the Alta line is the Merlot-Cabernet. This is an impressive wine!  Aged in French oak and stainless steel tanks, this ruby red wine has a complex nose with intense flavors of plum, chocolate, vanilla and a hint of green pepper.  The body is well rounded, has a very smooth palate and is an excellent wine with any red meat. Impress your Merlot drinker with this one. It’s won over many of our customers already!

A very unique wine from Cantine Teanum is the Otre Negroamaro for Fish. Otre is the next level of wines from Teanum. Typically. Negroamaro is very bold and intense in flavor with a bit of a bitter finish, as with the Otre Negroamaro for Meat. The “Fish” is much lighter and is reminiscent of a good Pinot Noir.  Several days of cold maceration gives this wine it’s softness and harmony creating the perfect wine for Salmon, Mahi, Grouper and other fresh fish.  Try this one and see how much more interesting the wine is compared to a Pinot Noir.

I have to mention the Otre Primitivo – not your ordinary Primitivo. I am guilty of being overly critical of Primitivo’s in the past, but this one has the best flavors of the vine that I have tasted in years! I expected this to be a simple table wine but it’s not! It’s exciting, it’s bold, it’s complex and very smooth. While this wine is excellent with pasta dishes or eggplant, chicken or veal parmigiana, be adventurous and try it with a really good pizza and be amazed at the flavors that stand out.

Our last wine is one for the wine connoisseur in all of us, Teanum’s Gran Tiati.  This wine is a velvety blend of Aglianico, Montepulciano and Syrah. Aged for 12 months in French and American oak, another 3 months in stainless steel and 6 months in the bottle produces a wine that is full of red fruit flavors, spice and vanilla. It is soft and well balanced with a very good structure and should be served with more impressive dishes of grilled or roasted meats.

We are very fortunate to have found this innovative winery with impressive and affordable wines for nearly every palate. Stop by Siesta Key Wines and ask us for a sample! Ciao!