Apulia offers not only beautiful landscapes and coastlines, but also delicious culinary delights. Read more about the famous olive oil, the wines and the traditional "Pane di Altamura" bread!
Olive oil – the liquid gold
The centuries old history and tradition of oil manufacturing favour the high-quality oil in Apulia, and no less than 60% of the olive oil is produced in the oil mills of Apulia. From north to south, the landscapes are characterized by endless olive groves and ancient olive trees.
The famous olive oil regions are the province Brindisi and the communities Carovigno, Ceglie, Messapica, Cisternino, Fasano, Ostuni, San Michele, Salentino, San Vito dei Normanni and Villa Castelli.
The most popular olive oils from Apulia are:
- The virgin olive oil Extra Terra di Bari DOP, which originates from the olive groves around the capital Bari. The olive oils from Castel del Monte, Bitondo, Murgia dei Trulli and delle Grotte also belong to this high-quality oil.
- The olive oil “Terra D’Otranto DOP” is produced in the province Lecce and some communities of the province Taranto.
- The virgin olive oil Extra DOP from Dauno olives is produced in the oil mills of the province Foggia.
The delicious bread “Pane di Altamura”
The “Pane di Altamura” is the first bread speciality from Italy which is protected with the quality seal DOP (Denominazione d’Origine Protetta). It is the Italian seal for products with a protected designation of origin. To produce this bread, a special mixture of varied kinds of durum wheat is needed, which is mainly cultivated in the Apulian high plains of the Murgia and the hills of Matera in Basilicata.
Once it was the basic food for the inhabitants of the Murgia. They knead the dough at home and baked it in the bakeries of the small villages. They sealed the dough with a kind of stamp of the head of the family. Its main feature was the long durability, which was important to ensure the food for the farmers for weeks, the duration they were in their farmsteads in the high plains.
The Altamura bread has a long tradition in Apulia and owes its excellent quality not only to its raw materials but also to the traditional manufacturing method. It consists of five steps. After adding water, salt and yeast they are: kneading – forming – letting the dough rise – forming – baking (in brickkilns). Thus, it gets its fine taste, a good digestibility and long durability.
Winegrowing in Apulia
The winegrowing is also deeply rooted in the Apulian tradition. The mild climate conditions favour the vineyards and therefore it is no surprise, that Apulia produces more wine than any other Italian region! Nowadays, there are 25 DOC wine regions in Apulia.
The most famous grape is the “Primitivo”, which is full-bodied and has a high alcoholic content. The most cultivated grape variety is the “Negroamaro”. The cultivation of white wine grapes accounts for only 20% of the entire production, with an increasing trend. Since recently, you can also find excellent rosé wines.
We have selected some regional quality wines:
- The most famous quality wine from Apulia is the “Castel del Monte”, which is named after the Stauffer castle of Friedrich II. The winegrowing regions lie nearby the castle.
- The “Salice Salentino” is originated from the province Lecce. Its red and rosé wines pertain to the high-class of the Salentine wines, and its white wine Chardonnay is a quality wine.
- The “Rosa del Golfo” is produced in Alézio in Salento and is the No. 1 of the rosé wines.
- The “Locorotondo” thrives in the Valle d’Itria. It is made of the regional grapes Verdesca and Bianco d’Alessano and is one of the best Apulian DOC white wines.
- The “Moscato di Trani” is one of the best Southern Italian dessert wines. It is available as Dolce natural (15% vol.) and Liquoroso (18% vol.).
Apulia is diverse. Choice is yours.
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