Water and Wine– The Underwater Sparkler: Bisson “Abissi”   12 comments

Goodnight, Irene

As the Tempest, Irene, rages outdoors, lashing us with wind and water, I sit here clearing the fog in my head with a hot teapot of English B this Sunday morning, hoping that my electricity and therefore my internet access will not abate.  It also brings to mind the relationship between water and wine. 

From the events described by St. John at the Wedding at Canaan, to the actual mixing at table of wine and water as Thomas Jefferson seems to have done with what he described as vin ordinaire (say it ain’t so, T-Jef!), to the bigger no-no of putting ice cubes in wine, I didn’t think there was much more to say about this subject. 

Till this hit my radar– forget about putting water in wine, how about putting wine in (salt) water.  This is exactly what Piero Lugano, a wine merchant and producer, in Chiavari, Italy (in northwestern Italy near Genova), has done.  Having no room to bottle ferment his sparkling wines somehow received permission from Italian bureaucrats to store them under water off the coast– a modern day miracle if you ask me.  According to a New York Times report, the gentle currents in these waters actually keep the lees moving continuously through the wine and results is a beautiful spumante, by the looks of it on the videos.  Apparently the water temperature is also perfect for this task.  And when the wines emerge from the sea, the bottles, not surprisingly, are covered with sea creatures:   http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9ZIopxqznXU

The Bisson “Abissi” 2009 vintage was pulled from the depths in July and hopefully might be available in the US sometime this fall.  Maybe this is just a gimmick to sell wine, but count me in. 

Though their saber cut technique leaves a lot to be desired, if you want to see how Italian Fancy Boys enjoy their Abissi check out this short clip: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eyNEvQ6ZO0c

 The original NYT article can be found here: http://www.nytimes.com/2011/08/24/dining/underwater-sparkling-wine.html?_r=1&sq=abissi&st=cse&scp=1&pagewanted=print

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Posted August 28, 2011 by Sybarite Sauvage in Food-Wine-Love

12 responses to “Water and Wine– The Underwater Sparkler: Bisson “Abissi”

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  1. Hey Syb Sauv,

    Not to split hairs, but John the Evangelist tells of the Lord’s first sign at a wedding feast in Cana – a village in or near Galillee. Canaan was more Old Testament – Hebrew Scripture, probably somewhere in or near Mesopotamia.

    Great story of the Lord making very extraordinary wine from very ordinary water in very ordinary stone jars … and about 150 gallons of it! The takeaway? The Lord can do extraordinary things in our very ordinary lives when he is invited!


    • Yo, Double-D,

      Point taken on the Cana/Canaan thing. But you are aware that this is a wine & food blog and the catechism class is across the hall, in the room overlooking the parking lot, right?

      150 Gallons? I’m sure you’ll tell me next that not one person suffered from a hangover. Now THAT would be miraculous.

      Does this mean I don’t get to go to heaven?

    • DD, must have been the best wine ever!

  2. Bisson wines are anything but vin ordinaire. What can I say – I am a sucker for Ligurian wines. I had Bisson’s Marea at a NYC restaurant back in February, and it was like drinking the Sea itself (in the best possible way, not the gross dirty sea water you would splash in) .

  3. Hello! I also took interest in Piero Lugano’s peculiar way to store his wines…but I wondered if he had TASTED his wines underwater.

    I did. Check it out:

    • Mike,

      Using your tongue to pierce a plastic wrap membrane– a Brilliant and Sensual solution!

      Not being a scuba-guy, I will have to try this in the bath tonight! But it seems it would be better if you have your best girl in the tub with you, don’t you think?

      Blub-blub-blub…heh-heh… 😉

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