Primitivo is a dark-skinned grape known for producing inky, tannic wines, particularly Primitivo di Manduria and its naturally sweet Dolce Naturale variant. Although there have been contentious and long-running debates about the variety's geographical origins, there is little question that Primitivo's modern-day home is in southern Italy, particularly Puglia.
A classic Primitivo wine is high in both alcohol and tannins, intensely flavored and deeply colored. In Manduria, the fortified liquoroso variants often reach an ABV of 18%, which is dulled to 14% in the table wines. A certain bitterness is often found in Primitivo which, combined with its mouth-puckering tannins, means that it needs a few years in either bottle or barrel.