Bocca di Lupo means mouth of the wolf in Italian and is named after the estate in Puglia where it is produced.
The Tormaresca winery was founded in 1998 by Piero Antinori, one of the most historic and famous names in the Italian wine constellation. Antinori started investing in Puglia in the late 1990s as part of a broad-based initiative to expand both nationally and internationally beyond his traditional base in Tuscany. His substantial investment in what had heretofore had been a lackluster sector of the Italian wine scene generated a lot of attention and raised the overall outlook for Puglian wines.
The Tormaresca winery consists of two parts: a large, 620 acre estate along the Adriatic coast in southern Puglias Salento DOC and a smaller - but still large - 320 acre vineyard estate, named Tenuta Bocca di Lupo, in the Castel del Monte DOC in central Puglia. Both vineyards grow a mix of traditional, native grape varieties as well as international varieties like Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Chardonnay.
Aglianico (ahl yahn ee coh) is a black-skinned, late-ripening grape variety native to southern Italy. Aglianico wines are generally full-bodied with soft tannins and high acidity. They are big wines, bold and rich with complex contours that share some of the same profiles as the more well-known and highly sought-after Barolos from the Piedmont region. However, Aglianico wines are a great value when compared to their considerably more expensive colleagues to the north.
Tormarescas Bocca di Lupo is comprised entirely of Aglianico grapes grown on the estates Castel del Monte vineyards. The fermentation takes place in stainless steel tanks followed by malolactic fermentation in small oak barriques for 15 months. The wine then spends another 12 months in the bottle prior to release for sale. This Aglianico is a real treat. It is red and black in color with a seductive blend of blackberry and kitchen spice aromas. It has a rich and earthy mouthfeel without being heavy. The Bocca di Lupo has a more fruity character and softer texture than Aglianico wines produced elsewhere in southern Italy. But it is definitely Aglianico in nature with its rich, aromatic flavors and trademark lingering, acidic finish.
The richness of this Aglianico begs for companionably strong, rich food. This is a wine meant for beef, lamb, goat, game, pasta with meaty sauces and seasoned cheeses. Pair this wine, for example, with veal shank and herbs or Sardinian-style meat sauce with celery over penne di ziti.