Yorkshire's Independent Restaurant Guide

Lebanese Wine

As someone who fell in love over a Lebanese Wine (Chateau Musar 1981 since you ask) I have a predilection for unusual offerings from the Levant.

They rarely grace supermarket shelves as the harsh conditions they are made under (war, insurrection, heat, low yields) make the prices high.

Waitrose has recently had a little beauty, Chateau Ka, Source de Rouge, 2007, from the Bekaa Valley – which is actually a plateau above the coastal plane controlled famously by Hezbollah. It may not be there for long, so keep an eye out for this one or ask if your branch doesn’t have it.

It’s a hot country red using the same grape varieties as a claret – cabernet sauvignon, syrah and merlot. It smells perfumed, and tastes plummy, spicy and of sweet oak with a dry, almost dusty finish. Although it’s already soft with half an hour’s breathing in the glass makes it even more delicious and a perfect match for a lamb tagine, kofta or anything vaguely Middle Eastern which uses the sweet spices of ginger, cinnamon and rose.