What’s in My Glass? A Drop of Lebanon


The Middle East sometimes gets things right. Really right in the case of wines. Considering the Mesopotamians were making tons of wine thousands of years ago, it’s only natural that the fertile crescent is continuing to produce juice that goes beyond just “drinkable.”

In an effort to continuing exploring the world of wine under $15, I stumbled across the Massaya 2010 Classic Red–a blend of French grapes from Lebanon’s uuber-fertile Bekaa Valley.  Massaya, which has been family-owned and operated with the assistance of superstar French winemaking partners since the 1970s, is a classic producer with a solidly old-world feel to their wines.

The 2010 Classic, which I sipped over the course of a gloomy Saturday afternoon, was full-bodied and smooth, with aromas of ripe black and red cherries. Gentle, elegant flavors of cherry and strawberries dusted with smoke dominated the palate, and barely perceptible tannins gave this a soft and surprisingly cuddly finish. The ripe softness and supple finish of this juice instantly invoked memories of Sunday dinners with the family. Give me beef stew, pork chops, or anything from a Crockpot plus Massaya and I’ll be delighted.

Lebanese Wine Uncorked:

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Laura Loves: Cute glass charms like the smiling ghost pictured here.

This article about rare Lebanese wines that sell at auction for over $1500/bottle.

Fun Facts: Vitis Vinifera grapes (aka wine grapes) were documented in Lebanon 2000 years before Alexander the Great.

Ancient Lebanese winemakers used layers of oil and pine resin to protect early wines from oxidation in huge clay Amphorae.

Lebanon’s Bekkaa valley has been praised for its fertility since the Roman ages.

  • October 24, 2013
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