Here is a red that will spark conversation around the dinner table. Hailing from the Bekaa Valley in Lebanon, the grapes are quite literally grown in a war zone, which can make harvest a fearsome thing from time to time. Made from a blend of organically-grown cinsault, shiraz and cab sav, this is an unoaked wine that shows some plummy fruit, tobacco leaf, smoky savouriness and Asian spices, with a sprinkle of dried herbs on the nose. The palate is medium to fuller-bodied, with spiced fruit flavours, an appealing lick of savouriness, a slight grip to the tannins, and a plum and earth finish. It will come into its own with some lamb chops.
The 2012 vintage is a deep scarlet with a beguiling smoky black fruits nose – concentrated blackberry and mulberry notes, tinged with spice. A good concentration of pure, black and red cherry fruit on the palate is supported by a juicy, fresh acidity – this wine, with its’ soft tannins, is balanced and long and best enjoyed in its youth.