A mind-blowing, fine-value red

2017 I Muri Primitivo

2017 I Muri Primitivo, Vigneti del Salento, Puglia, Italy £10.49-£13 AitkenWines.com; WhitmoreAndWhite.co.uk;  Drinkmonger.com; IVVeritas.com; RichardGrangerWines.co.uk; HayWines.co.uk

This might be one of the finest-value red wines of the year, but it is also rather a last-minute recommendation. I have not had a chance to taste any bottles specifically for this week’s article because I am writing this piece on hols, so I am drawing on my finest, early August wine memories for inspiration.

I am often asked to recommend wines for parties and weddings and I always ask my clients to do their final decision-making “blind”. This epic Primitivo romped home at a highly charged taste-off and in doing so it blew all of the attendees’ minds with its insanely delicious flavour and unquestionable rapport qualité-prix.

With the merest kiss of oak and utilising a large percentage of old vines, the fruit intensity here is tremendous, but it never oversteps the mark into elevated alcohol levels or Portiness. In fact, I Muri weighs in at 13.5%, which is nimble and refreshing by comparison with most red wines from Italy’s “heel”.

The violet and rose-petal nose gives way to a vibrant plum and mulberry palate and it is dotted with liquorice and coffee-bean notes, which add impressive complexity. You must taste this wine. I know I will be drinking several flagons next Saturday, so perhaps we can raise a glass together.

Matthew Jukes is a winner of the International Wine & Spirit Competition’s Communicator of the Year (MatthewJukes.com).