Teatro Latino Mesca Rosso Puglia 18
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When it comes to the biggest and the boldest reds from Italy, it seems Super Tuscans rule the roost and get all of the love in the winepress. If you love those big, inky, chewy reds; however, you don't love the price, then mosey on south to Italy's heel of the boot and check out the wines of Puglia.
In the 1970s, innovative winemakers in Tuscany discovered the magic that resulted when blending indigenous grapes with classic Bordeaux varietals such as Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and Petit Verdot. This unsanctioned union of grapes grew out of the local winemaker's desire to experiment with the noble French varietals and expressed their frustration with the strict bureaucratic rules forbidding that action.
The winemakers were determined to express their artistic freedom using grapes of their choosing. They took the bold step of declassifying their experimental wines to side-step the law, and the result was the birth of what we now know as the Super Tuscan.
What began as an experiment by a small handful of Tuscan winemakers has grown into a collection of highly sought-after wines at some pretty hefty prices. The good news is that this desire for freedom of choice has spread to other parts of Italy, resulting in some terrific alternatives to Super Tuscans, and happily, at much more reasonable prices!
Teatro Latino's Mescà is a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and Primitivo, along with a small percentage of local indigenous grapes. In the glass, the dark, inky purple color opens to notes of blackberry, dark forest berry, and black cherry, with hints of vanilla, tobacco leaf, dark chocolate, and expresso.
It's a big, bold, rich red, yet it maintains a superb balance with plenty of freshness and lift. The Primitivo contributes the enormous depth of plush, dark fruit, and the Cabernet provides the wine with a beautiful counterpoint of structure.
It's truly a "Super Puglian" at a super friendly price!