Top Travel Tip: Vini Liquori – Lucca, Italy

Today’s Tip: Vini Liquori – Lucca, Italy

Vini Liquori Vanni

Lucca is a charming little Tuscan town the Englishman and I breezed through a couple of years ago.  We were visiting his parents, who had discovered the quietly beautiful town as an ideal place to study Italian.

We only spent two days wandering the old streets, admiring the ancient churches and sampling local pastries and gelato, but Lucca left an impression and made me want to spend a lot more time exploring Tuscany.

Among the many gorgeous cheese shops and bakeries, one place particular stood out. We were looking to buy a bottle of wine to thank his parents for hosting us, so when we passed Vini Liquori, we ducked in.

Just past the little entryway, was a long wooden counter and the walls were lined with wooden shelves full of standard selection of wine and liquor.

So many bottles

It looked like any other liquor store save for the pretty antique floor tiles, but then I noticed another doorway at the back of the shop and the clerk motioned for us to go through.

On the other side of the archway and down a narrow staircase, we were amazed by what we saw.  As if transported through time, we found ourselves standing in a dusty, dim, cavernous wine cellar like nothing I had ever seen.

Rows and rows of bottles stretched out in front of us under the low concrete ceilings. There were  racks and shelves as far as the eye could see and there seemed to be endless nooks and crannies and anterooms hidden within the cave.

The bottles ranged from relatively new vintages to positively ancient ones so crusted with dirt and dust it was hard to read the labels.  There were thousand upon thousands of bottles down there and the shopkeeper had given us free reign to inspect them.

Bottles

After helping us select a bottle from the surrounding vineyards, he told me that his father had opened the shop in the mid 1960’s and it had been in the family ever since.

Whether you are a connoisseur or just like a glass now and then, If you find your self in Lucca, this place is an experience in itself.

[Piazza S. Salvatore 7 E.mailinfo@enotecavanni.com]

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