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.
Cantele 2013 Salice Salentino
The Cantele 2013 Salice Salentino Riserva shows a greater level of depth and finesse compared to many of its peers. The wine is packed tight with blackberry fruit, with Maraschino cherry, plum and prune in abundance. The wine is chewy and rich for sure, but it also provides an authentic and generous portrait of a red wine from Puglia. A spicy beef or lamb dish would make the perfect pairing partner.
Cantele is another exciting winery that represents the energy and the innovation that comes with a new generation. The Cantele family, including siblings Gianni, Paolo, Umberto and Luisa, are symbols of the Salento new wave. They show careful attention to the Negroamaro grape (they even make a Metodo Classico sparkling wine with the variety that is very interesting) and experiment with Verdeca, Fiano, Primitivo and international varieties such as Chardonnay. I had the opportunity to visit the estate this year and learned of the many growth possibilities they hold for the future. For example, they own an abandoned Masseria (rural farmstead) that would make a fantastic visitor’s center or boutique hotel. I know that the next time I come to visit they will have new ideas to pursue. Cantele is a winery that emits a feeling of constant movement and forward-momentum.
Robert Parker Wine Advocate
We just had to share these awesome photos by De Gusto Salento from the Cantele Negroamaro harvest 2015.
Growers in Salento are expecting this to be a super vintage for Negroamaro.
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.
(translation by Jeremy Parzen)
“They’ve been in their cage for nine months,” writes winemaker Gianni Cantele on his Facebook, “but they have no desire to escape!”
“Cantele’s first sparkling wine made from Negroamaro will be ready for Christmas 2015. Stay tuned!”
We were thrilled to read that Chicago-based wine and travel writer Rob Frisch, author of the popular wine blog Odd Bacchus, had selected the 2009 Salice Salentino Riserva as one of his “top reds in 2013.”
Here’s what Rob Had to say about the wine…
According to The Sotheby’s Wine Encyclopedia, the best wines in Italy’s Salice Salentino DOC are its Negroamaro-based reds, and the Cantele certainly did not disappoint.
This 100% Negroamaro had tight, powdery red-fruit aroma and ample fruit on the palate.
I got a blast of cherries, and others in the group also tasted currants and raisins.
Rich but bright, this full-bodied wine had well-balanced, rustic acids and some serious tannins on the finish.
Image via Odd Bacchus.
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!