Cabernet Sauvignon, Cinsault, Carignan
75cl * Vegan, Organic & Sustainable * 14% ABV * Bekaa Valley, Lebanon
Chateau Musar undoubtedly is one of the world’s wine icons. Since it’s founding in 1930 by Gaston Hochar, the Hochar family have acquired a reputation for producing outstanding wines inspired by Lebanon’s 6,000-year winemaking heritage. It was the late, great Serge Hochar, Gaston's son, who perfected the formula for Chateau Musar’s Red and helped build iconic status, becoming Decanter Magazine’s first ‘Man of the Year’ in 1984.
Seven years in the making, Chateau Musar Red is an equal blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Carignan and Cinsault from vineyards near the Bekaa Valley villages of Aana and Kefraya on gravelly soils over limestone. Planted from the 1930s onwards, yields are low from these mature bush vines. They have an average age of 40 years old and produce just 15 to 35 hectolitres per hectare.
In Serge's own words, “if you give my wines more time, they will give you more joy” and Chateau Musar says of the 2017 that it is "very promising indeed". The wines of this year are unique, yet retaining classical Chateau Musar character. Preliminary tastings showed that the 2017 vintage has more structure and power. It has a bright ruby colour and there are sweet red cherries, mulberries and plums on the nose with a hint of tea tree and liquorice. The tannins are soft and well-integrated and this vintage has good acidity, depth of fruit and a long finish. Cellared well, it will age beautifully for decades.
Chateau Musar recommend Butler's Thief cork remover to open their wines as corks can degrade during a long cellaring. For more information on how to open your bottle with the prongs, watch the above helpful video of our very own Rupert Pritchett demonstrating the perfect uncorking.
After careful decanting (and discarding of sediment, usually in the last centimetre of the bottle) the wine should be allowed to breathe for an hour and served at 18°C with roasts, grills (especially lamb), casseroles, game, and mature cheeses.