Primitivo... Primi for first

Posted by Joelle Thomson on

Primitivo is a big selling Italian red for good reason - it consistently over delivers on flavour for the money it costs to buy a bottle.

Read on to find out why, preferably with a glass  of this dark, velvety red in hand...

Gnarled grapevines and olive trees stretch as far as the eye can see in the vast flat land of Puglia in southern Italy.

The 400 kilometre long wine region runs from the spur of the boot right down to its heel and is constantly drenched in sun, rendering the land an arid look of tinder dry wheat fields, interrupted only by the vibrant green of alborello grapevines and olive trees.

The name alborello is the word the Italians give to the untrellised bush vines that thrive in this climate, gaining heat from the land at night and shelter from the sun during the day - thanks to their canopy.

Puglia is home to Primitivo, Bombino Nero, Negroamaro, Pampanuto, Susumaniello, Uva di Troia and many more besides. Not to mention all the usual international suspects that big wineries have brought here to ripen in the incredibly reliable consistent climate. It’s a dream for profit and for Primitivo, among the many other indigenous grapes that give this region its uniquely Italianesqueness when it comes to grapes – namely, more unusual grapes grow here that are not only never seen in other places but are never heard of outside of their own region.

Primitivo is the most famous and it’s one of Regional Wines & Spirits’ biggest sellers from our Italian wine shelves.

It offers exceptionally good value for money, as the top wines below show, but first a little information about this great red.


Primitivo facts and figures


  • The name Primitivo comes from the Italian word ‘primi’, which means first – this is one of the first grapes to ripen in its home region of Puglia.
  • Primitivo originates in Croatia where it is known as Cranagl …
  • It is also known as Zinfandel in the United States
  • Primitivo from Italy tastes very different to Zinfandel, despite being the same, genetically identical grape variety.
  • It’s best known home today is the sun drenched southern Italian region of Puglia – Italy’s third biggest wine region after the Veneto and Emilia-Romagna.
  • There are two main styles of Primitivo made in southern Italy; big bodied, high alcohol, intensely fruity wines and drier, more savoury styles.
  • The fruitier styles tend to come from Primitivo di Manduria with the more restrained styles coming from Gioia del Colle.
  • We have both styles in store at Regional – see our top picks below.


Top Primitivos in store at Regional…


2016 Fatalone Primitivo Gioia del Colle $30.99

Click here to buy


2017 San Marzano Il Pumo Primitivo $18.99

Click here to buy


2015 GIorano Primitivo di Manduria $27.99

Click here to buy

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