Monday, January 31, 2005

My Two Day Old Liano... I Love to Pump

Home alone with the kiddies usually does not lend itself to serious wine drinking. If you’re lucky, you can steal a moment or two to swirl your glass and have a pensive sip but I have learned from experience that those moments are usually to be had after the little rodents are tucked away in bed.

But with a veggies lasagna on the table, imagine my joy in finding a bottle of Liano on the counter, albeit two-thirds drunk. It is the pleasure of the pump. By essentially vacuum packing the remaining wine, oxidation of the wine is slowed, and it can be saved and enjoyed another day.

Liano 2000, Rubicone, Umberto Cesari ($29 SAQ)
Hailing from the Emilia Romagna region of Italy, this Sangiovese-Cabernet mix got me thinking about how the Italians really do make great “food wine.” I have come across a number of wines from pretty well all over Italy that share similar traits; an evoquative, warm bouquet and on first sip, deceptively thin on the palette. One senses that Burgundian boom, as it gains amplitude as it reaches the back of your mouth, but it is when you eat that it really shines. The Liano smelt like fermenting plums mixed with whole wheat toast. On my first sip, it was slightly alcoholic, but a little fruitier than most of the Sangiovese Cab blends that one sees from Tuscany. All that changed with the Lasagna as both the fruit and the alcohol seemed to fade away, being replaced with that beautiful sangiovese “earthiness,” and refreshing acidity. Nothing mind-blowing, just the perfect drink for the circumstance. Ah, the pleasure of the pump.

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