My favourite Primitivo di Manduria – from 60 year old wines at Bacco, Bangkok

December 3, 2011

One of my favourite wines is the ‘Primitivo di Manduria’ produced from 60 year old vines, either the 2006 or the 2007 vintages (I like both) which I usually have at Bacco ristorante and wine bar in Thonglor, which is my favourite Italian restaurant in Bangkok.

Look at the colour

Manduria is a small country town in the province of Taranto with about 30,000 inhabitants in Apulia, close to the coast of Southern Italy. Apart from its interesting history it is also a place where the best Primitivo grapes are grown and made into wine.

The DOC Primitivo di Manduria wines are unlike other Primitivo wines made with a 100% of Primitivo grapes. The wines are usually heavy, dark red and have at least 14% of alcohol. More than two thousands years ago the Primitivo grapes were brought from Greece to Southern Italy and ever since wine making was part of the local culture.

In the video clip above the vines are not supported by any trellis system. The grapes are harvested by hand without secateurs. The bunches are small. The farm vehicle delivering the grapes to the winery is tiny.

Italo Western come to mind when listening to the film music. The processing, however, is more on the modern side. And I love the end of the clip when a glass of Primitivo is presented.

The ‘2007 Primitivo di Manduria Sessantanni Old Wines’ by Feudi di San Marzano, is a great wine. I love the fruitiness, the elegance with the dense and velvety tannins, the finely balanced acids. Hmm, just like being in paradise.

Feudi di San Marzano is not a small producer though, it has 500 ha under vines and produces a wide range of wines, many from indigenous varieties.

So if you are in Bangkok and you want truly Italian experience, go to Bacco and order a bottle of Primitivo di Manduria. You will not be disappointed.


Easter Sunday: Lunch at Bacco, Bangkok

April 26, 2011

No better place to go for a Sunday Easter family lunch than Ristorante Bacco, our favourite Italian restaurant in Thonglor, our old neighbourhood. We like real food with rustic charm and not the designer stuff, small bits of food looking like works of art on big plates.

Below you can see what we ate. First are the three antipasti we selected. Delicious.

Melanzane alla parmigiana

Carpaccio

Insalata caprese

All three antipasti on my plate

Our family consists of “traditionalists”. Three of us ordered gnocchi, the other main dish was tagliatelle with mushrooms in a creamy sauce.

Gnocchi

Tagliatelli delicata

How about the wine, you might ask. I love to order a simple ‘Primitivo’ (called “Zinfandel” in the USA) from Apulia. This time I selected a pricier wine than normal, a Primitivo made from 60 year old vines.

It turned out to be an excellent choice. The ‘2007 Primitivo di Manduria DOC’ by Feudi di San Marzano is a big wine (with 14.5% alcohol). The intense fruit aromas, plums mainly but also with earthy and spicy notes, had me forget that I was in the tropics.

Manduria is a town of about 30,000 inhabitant, about 30 km east of Taranto and about 14 km north from the Apulian coast. The place has a very warm climate.

The wine is made from 100% Primitivo grapes. One can sense that the vines are old, very old (sixty years, is what the label says). The bottles are also very heavy and old fashioned. I liked it, not wasting any thought about the carbon footprint.

2007 Primitivo di Manduria DOC

The back label of the Primitivo by Feudi di San Marzano

And after all this delicious food came the sweets or dolce as they are called in Italian.

Strawberries and cream

Pistaccio ice cream

Tirramisu

This was a very memorable Easter Sunday lunch. We had a great time with yummy food and delicious wine at Bacco. I will remember the wine and order it again.

If you need something special, and you do not want any more Thai food, have a break and eat Italian at Bacco. You will not regret it.

Address:
Bacco Osteria da Sergio
Sukhumvit Soi 53, Bangkok,
Thailand
Tel.: +66-2-662-4538
http://bacco-bkk.com