Primo de Lanzarote
We are delighted to be stocking Primo de Lanzarote Vermouth, as the name would suggest it was Lanzarote's first! Primo officially launched in 2017, with a team made up of Davide Musci and his friends Luca & Alberto. Ollie rcently spent time with the team behind Primo, to find out more about their project and vermouths (or Vermut as it is know in Spanish). For those that are not aware, vermouth is essentially a fortified wine, flavoured with botanicals and typically drank as an aperitif.
The Primo story goes further back in history than 2017, as Davide (as the rest of the team) from Piemonte, Italy, the birthplace of the drink in 1786, was making both vermouth and liquors for family and friends going back to 2011. When he moved to Lanzarote he experimented further, using the Island´s unique and delicious grape varietals, particularly Malvasia Volcanica and Diego. With great results and feedback, he was encouraged by his now partners to commercialise his unique recipe, which includes Canary Island botanicals such as orange peel, sage, elderberry, coriander & saffron among others. The most important differentiator though, is the wine itself, which is of a much higher quality than a typical vermouth. This has been a collaboration with Bodegas Reymar in Mancha Blanca, a Denominacion de Origin winery, where the wine is produced and the vermouth elaborated and infused with the botanicals for two months.
Primo is now available as a white or a red vermouth. Interestingly though, red vermouth isn´t made with red grapes, it is usually coloured with such things as caramel. In Primo´s case, it´s from locally sourced prickly pear fruit and palm honey from La Gomera!
Of course, the time wouldn´t have been complete without a tasting. The white is bright and clear with yellow tones. It´s well balanced, with a touch of acidity and an intriguing combination of sweetness and bitterness. It´s light and refreshing with a bias of citrus and floral flavours.
Meanwhile the red, ruby in colour has aromas of red fruit and a hint of balsamic notes. Again, it has a well balanced acidity blended with herbs and spices.
Serving is recommended with a slice of lemon, orange and grapefruit. Once opened, you´ll have about two weeks (that wasn´t necessary for me!) if it´s air tight and refrigerated.