2016 Chateau Musar Bekaa Valley Rouge 0.375 ltr
Chateau Musar is one of the most special wine estates in the world. On the one hand this is the location, the Lebanese Bekaa Valley, on the other hand they still use a completely traditional working method. The vineyards lie on siliceous limestone soils at an altitude of about 1000 metres. The long, warm summers guarantee excellent ripening of the grapes. Owner Serge Hochar, who was named Winemaker of the Year by the English magazine Decanter Magazine in the past, also received his wine training in France.
The expectations for the 2016 harvest were clearly influenced by the thoughts about the bad weather of 2015. Nothing could be further from the truth. December 2015 got off to a positive start with 130 mm of precipitation. This was followed by 360mm in January accompanied by plenty of snow, providing much-needed moisture and nutrients to soils. February and March proved cold and rainy with another 300mm of precipitation greatly welcomed by the arid terrain. April was warm with an average night temperature of plus 5 degrees Celsius instead of the minus 5 of the previous year. May came with 45mm of rain, enough to stimulate the vines and from then on we started to have higher expectations for this year's harvest. A sunny June followed with low humidity and in July we enjoyed an average temperature of 34 degrees throughout the month. Due to the early ripening, the harvest could be started much earlier than in all previous years! Cabernet sauvignon was the first to be harvested on August 16 from silty soils that encouraged early ripening. Cinsault followed on September 2 with carignan on September 7.
The blend consists of equal parts of cabernet sauvignon, cinsault and carignan. Each variety was fermented with natural yeasts in concrete vats, then aged for 12 months in French oak barrels before being blended and bottled in February 2019 without fining or filtration during the summer months of July and August. Fermentation went smoothly, with an average temperature between 27 and 29 in concrete vats. After the separate fermentations, the quality of Cabernet was found to be excellent, with great depth of fruit and concentration. Cinsault was elegant and silky with an explosion of aromas. As usual, Carignan showed its quality, a result of the warm conditions where the yield of the grapes was lower, but with higher concentration. This is an exceptional grape that is truly typical of the Bekaa terroir. The wine will not be released in NL until late spring 2022
The 2016 Musar has a deep red color, with aromas of sweet cherries, plums and dried fruit along with a subtle spice element and a hint of tobacco. The wine has a soft, round mouthfeel with great flavor and fruit concentration - caramel, mocha, ripe red fruits supported by soft, velvety tannins and a spicy finish. Delicious to drink, but as with all Musars, this wine can also age great.
FACT: Under the tab: Annex you will find the official fact sheet of this wine. We will automatically send you this digitally when you order this wine
Viticulture is not new in Lebanon, in the Beeka Valley. A bronze press wine press was found there (the Phoenicians were active here). The famous Bacchus temple in Baalbek testifies that the Romans already made wine there. The Beeka Valley is ideal for grape cultivation. The valley is about eight kilometers wide and lies between two mountain ranges at about a thousand meters height. The climate is extremely warm. Fortunately, the height ensures a strong night-time cooling. As a result, the fruity aromas are preserved in the grapes. Thanks to snow from the mountains, sufficient water flows in the Valley. The substrate consists of a mixture of loam, boulders and gray limestone. The microclimate is so ideal that the vines usually remain in perfect health. The ongoing war violence in this region is a negative factor. But despite that, people have always continued to make wine. Only in the years 1976 and 1984 no wine was made because of the war. The grapes had to be transported across the line of fire about 100 km to the winery just north of Beirut. After more than a thousand years of alcoholic draining as a result of Islam, the Jesuits started growing wine again in 1857. Gaston Hochar founded the wine company Chateau Musar in 1930. Lebanon was then still under French mandate. He bought his grapes from the Beeka Valley and made a winery and cellar on the western side of the mountain in Lebanon in Ghazir, just north of Beirut. French professors advised him on setting up his wine company.
He sent his son Serge on an internship to Bordeaux (Château Langoa-Barton). It is this Serge Hochar who has made the wines of Château Musar known worldwide. Serge Hochar consciously opts for a blend, in which the firm, sturdy and firm structure of the Cabernet Sauvignon is accompanied by the fruit “of the Rhône” (Carignan and Cinsault). Such a blend hardly occurs elsewhere. He himself says that his wines are made in a very natural way, with natural yeasts, without clarification and without filtering. "They are wines without make-up." The red castle wines are aged for an average of 12 months in French barrels, which are not toasted. This is followed by years of cellar rest. At the end of the second year after harvest, the blend is determined with the sole decision factor being the taste. Each vintage is different and has its own characteristics. The red Château Musar is an extraordinary traditional wine, if not old-fashioned in style. Its color is never really dark and usually brownish, with spices and a mild spiciness in both the aroma and taste. The wine can age very well. Serge Hochar finds them at their best after fifteen years. They are wines with their own style.
|Type of Wine
|Drinking as of
|Earthy, Complex, Dark fruit, Dry, Aged on wood, Powerful, Tannines, Full
|Indruk maken, Lekker luxe, Open haard