WINE REVIEW: 2017 Umberto Cesari ‘Liano’, Sangiovese/Cabernet Sauvignon, Rubicone, IGT, Italy ($35)
by Andrew Chalk
This wine is from an IGT (Indicazione Geografica Tipica) area. That means that the area as a whole has not produced wines that average sufficient distinction to be designated a DOC or DOCG. What does this mean to the wine buyer? Not that there are not good wines (for a long period of time some of the most revered wines in Tuscany, known as ‘Super Tuscans’, were designated IGT). A better axiom is: judge each producer. Umberto Cesari is a producer that, I predict, you will appreciate. This wine is a fine example.
The appearance is a deep opaque raspberry, shedding some intensity at the rim. The nose is blackberry with hints of blackcurrant, lead pencil, oak barrels, burnt matches and bouquet garni. On the palate there is a weighty mouthfeel. The structured backbone implies a decade’s ageability. The blackcurrant emerges dominant, leering over the blackberry and a frame of well-measured acid frames it all.
Looked at from ‘30,000 feet’ this is an unmistakably Italian wine in the way it comes at you as a crucible of multiple flavors and textures, none of them out of place.