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Wine of the week: Wines of Cantine San Marzano

The Vine Guy Scott Greenberg sat down with the managing director of wine cooperative Cantine San Marzano for a selection of Italian wines from the Puglia region.

Italy has 20 different distinct administrative wine regions. Some, such as Tuscany and Piedmont, are very well-known. Others, such as Umbria and Veneto, are rapidly gaining popularity in the U.S.

However, there is one very productive area that is definitely worth knowing: Puglia.

Located in the “heel of the boot” in southern Italy, the long and narrow region of Puglia is bordered by 500 miles of coastline, with the Adriatic Sea to the east, the Ionian Sea to the southeast, and the Strait of Otranto and Gulf of Taranto to the south. The terrain varies from mountain peaks to sandy beaches, with flat plains undulating in between.

One of the major appellations within Puglia is Primitivo di Manduria DOC, home to the full-bodied red wine made from the famous Primitivo grape. It is also home to Cantine San Marzano, a collective of winemakers who came together with a single vision to put this appellation on the map.

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It all started in 1962 with 19 winemakers in and around the small town of San Marzano. While they all had the same goal, getting 19 different personalities to agree on anything was not an easy task, since each winemaker had their own way of doing things. But with the leadership of Francesco Cavallo, and a lot…

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