Cantele Rosato from Negroamaro: The “Gold Standard” of Pugliese rosé

Known as the gold standard in Pugliese rosé, Cantele’s Negroamaro Rosato regularly lands 90+ scores from top reviewers including Robert Parker. This clean, bright, extremely fresh wine abounds in red berry and ripe red fruit, a perfect pairing for shellfish, fried fish, and oven-fired whole fish like orata.

A note on Negroamaro, in all its expressions, from the Cantele winery site:

The village folk still call it Niuru Maru: Negroamaro, meaning bitter black (red).

In another era, Negroamaro was grown solely to ship to the north of Italy where the colder climate made it challenging to obtain the desired color and alcohol levels in the wines they produced. But in recent decades, more and more Salento wineries have looked to the variety as one of the most noble expressions of Pugliese viticulture.

Thanks to its vibrant acidity and its wonderful balance of fruit and earth flavors, the popularity of Negramaro only continues to grow — among winemakers and wine lovers alike.

Cantele’s barrique-aged Teresa Manara Negroamaro is widely considered to be a benchmark for the category and the winery’s Salice Salentino, also made using a selection of top fruit, is once its most critically acclaimed wines in the U.S. today. Cantele also uses Negroamaro to make youthful, fresh wine and a rosé, both of which are also favorites among our American friends.

“Plus, it looks beautiful on the summer table. A rare jewel of a rosé.”

“This is a terrific food wine, perhaps the most food-friendly rosé I’ve tasted in a year,” writes top U.S. wine blogger Meg Houston Maker.

“It has enough heft to stand up to grilled foods but enough freshness to pair with salads, cold seafood, and young cheeses. Plus, it looks beautiful on the summer table. A rare jewel of a rosé.”

We’re always thrilled to see Cantele wines in the media. But it was a special treat for us to read her impressions: she’s a U.S. leading wine educator and blogger and her writing (including her contributions to Palate Press) stand apart in our view as some of the best and most informed wine writing in America today (her background is in creative writing).

You can call her a “wine writer.” But we call her a damn good writer who just happens to write about wine…

Click here for her post.

Paolo waxes poetic for Negroamaro Rosato

negroamaro tasting notes

As if they’d been mulling it over for some time, the rose petals take sure aim at the raspberries as the lips of the soft strawberries barely stir.

And wherever thoughts may wander, they inevitably collide with the pomegranate in innumerable fragments of a once-in-a-lifetime story repeated over and over again in a simple tongue.

Paolo Cantele
(translation by Jeremy Parzen)

Cantele at Coppa, one of Boston’s sexiest

best italian restaurant boston

Above: for some, in-house charcuterie is a novelty. For others, like Chef Jamie Bissonette, it’s a necessity… a way of life… (image via the Coppa Facebook).

Boston-based Chef Jamie Bissonette “is not afraid to challenge diners’ palates with the daring nose-to-tail cooking (including calf’s-brain ravioli and blood-sausage pepperoni on pizza) at his intimate enoteca,” Coppa in Boston, wrote the editors of Food & Wine when their readers awarded him with the “Best New Chef” award in 2011.

Jamie and his partner Ken Oringer just got a rave review from New York Times restaurant critic Pete Wells for their newest outpost in Manhattan.

And Coppa in Boston continues to stand apart as a charcuterie salumeria pioneer.

We are proud to report that Coppa is currently serving Cantele Negroamaro Rosé by the glass.

Cantele at Fritti, Atlanta’s hippest pizzeria

best pizza atlanta georgia

We still haven’t made it down to Atlanta to check out the city’s hottest pizzeria, Fritti, where restaurateur Riccardo Ullio makes genuine pizza napoletana.

We’ll have to add it to the Rolling Thunder Cantele USA 2014 tour for sure!

In the meantime, if you happen to be down south, you’ll find Cantele Rosato di Negroamaro and Cantele Salice Salentino by the glass at Riccardo’s excellent restaurant.

309 North Highland Ave NE
Atlanta, GA ‎
(404) 880-9559
Google map

best wine list atlanta georgia

Images via the Fritti Facebook.

A preview of the classic-method Negroamaro

sparkling negroamaro

Paolo posted this on his Facebook today. He and (winemaker) Gianni believe that it will be ready to drink by Christmas 2014.

Gauging from the response on the Twitter and the Facebook, this wine is going to be huge (once it hits the market).

I’ll be at Cantele in a few weeks and I am DYING for them to let me taste it! I’ll report back…

Paolo, if you’re reading this… I’m hoping my Christmas will come early!

Jeremy Parzen

Sotto named one of LA Times “best wine lists”

paolo cantele

Above: My friend Paolo Cantele visited Sotto in Los Angeles last year.

When the owners of Sotto called me more than two years ago and asked me to curate the wine list at their soon-to-be-opened restaurant, I had no idea what a great adventure it would turn out to be.

Today, we’ve reached a milestone that seemed inconceivable then: on Saturday, food and restaurant critic S. Irene Virbila of the Los Angeles Times named our wine program one of the “best in Los Angeles,” together Spago and Valentino.

When I was a kid growing up in Southern California and then later an undergrad and grad student at U.C.L.A., Spago and Valentino were the stuff dreams were made of. I could have never imagined that one day my name would appear together with theirs as the curator of one of the top wine programs in the city.

From day one, Cantele wines have been poured by the glass at Sotto: the Rosato from Negroamaro and the Salice Salentino are among our guests’ favorites. And to this day, more than two years later, we’re still pouring those wines (I even poured the Salice Salentino for Anne Hathaway one time).

Here’s a link to a post I did last year on why the Salice Salentino is such a great restaurant wine.

I can’t conceal my pride in attaining this accolade and one of the greatest rewards of this experience has been making Cantele a centerpiece of our list.

Jeremy Parzen