Monday, December 15, 2008

2006 Lioco Indica

I love the smell of home-made bluberry muffins being baked and of course I love even more their taste, especially smeared with butter. The plump and juicy blueberries explode with flavor in my mouth. Out of all the berries out there, blueberry is probably my favorite. Yet I often am not too fond of blueberry juices or sodas. For some reason, the bluberry flavor usually does not work as well there.

But I have found a beverage with potent blueberry smells and flavors that works extremely well, the 2006 Lioco Indica.

Lioco is owned by Matt Licklider (a wine import specialist) and Kevin O'Connor (wine director at Michelin Two-Star Spago-Beverly Hills) and the word "Lioco" is a fusion of their last names. Onje of their goals is to work with blends of "under-dog" varietals such as old vine Carignan, Petite Sirah, Grenache and Mourvedre. They believe that the vineyards are extremely important and thus they prefer to engage in restrained wine making, to allow the vineyards to speak loudest.

The 2006 Lioco Indica ($21) is a blend of old-vine Carignan (87%) and Petite Sirah (13%) that was sourced from the Tollini Vineyard in Mendocino. The Carignan vines were planted in the 1950s. This wine was aged in older oak barrels for ten months and is unfined and unfiltered. Only 1860 cases were made of this wine and the goal was to produce a "balanced, food-friendly wine for under $20."

This deep, dark red wine had a strong aroma of blueberries with hints of violet notes, a touch of floral elements. It brought to mind the smell of fresh bluberry muffins. When I tasted it, the blueberry flavors were most dominant, along with touches of raspberry and black cherry, and a few hints of spice notes. It was medium to full bodied with a nice structure and a lingering finish. Its lush fruit flavors really pleased me and matched well to the bacon cheeseburger calzone I was eating. This certainly would be an excellent food wine, or something just to enjoy on its own.

This is definitely a wine I recommend. I bought mine at the Lower Falls Wine Co. though you can also order it online from Jill at Domaine547.

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