2007 Chateau Musar, Bekaa Valley, Lebanon

2007 Chateau Musar, Bekaa Valley, Lebanon

Product: 20078011941
2007 Chateau Musar, Bekaa Valley, Lebanon

Description

The 2007 Chateau Musar, the flagship estate red, is the typical, roughly equal blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Carignan and Cinsault, aged for 12 months in French oak. Adding a much needed layer of concentration to the Hochar also reviewed this issue, this also provides more focus and intensity, while still seeming to be a civilized Musar. Finishing with complexity, earthy nuances and a gamey hint, it is a relatively polished Musar that shows both finesse and flavor on the finish. After opening rather soft and reticent, the underlying power emerged strongly. There are tannins lurking underneath, of course. Add the acidity, providing some steel and intensity, and this becomes a completely different wine with three hours of decanting, up to and including, what seemed to me to be a high-toned nuance, a hint of Amarone that, hopefully, stays under control. With the right food match, you might not notice. Like most Musars, this is a bottling that has a lot of stuff going on. Take it for what it is. In any event, if I didn't have it in front of me at home the whole time, I'd think someone had switched my glasses from start to finish. It went from nice to it's Musar! It should age pretty nicely they always do but this opened so well that I would not chastise anyone who decided to dive in now. That said, as this became more powerful and astringent with decanting, it certainly demonstrated that it will benefit from more cellaring. It also proved that it could use another year or two to settle down. Let's take the aging curve in stages. Drink 2016-2032.
Mark Squires - 26/06/2014

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About this WINE

Chateau Musar

Chateau Musar

Château Musar was established by Gaston Hochar in 1930 and is without doubt Lebanon's top wine estate. Few properties have consistently produced such high quality wines in the face of adversity and war, and it is a testament to the sheer will and determination of the Hochars that wine has been produced every single year, bar 1976 and 1984.

The property is located in Ghazir, 15 miles north of Beirut overlooking the Mediterranean, whereas the vineyards themselves are located a long and sometimes dangerous truck journey over the mountains to the east of Beirut in the Beqaa (aka Bekaa) Valley. The vineyards benefit from an altitude of around 1000 metres and the subsequent cool nights serve to lengthen the crucial ripening process.

The red is a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Carignan and Cinsault. Serge Hochar, who has been involved with the property since 1959, states that the Cabernet Sauvignon provides "the bones and the skeleton to the wine, the Carignan the flesh and muscle and the Cinsault the silky smooth finesse".

Musar wines are unique in that Hochar blends the varietals only after they have spent three years in barrels and then waits a further four years before releasing the end result. This gives time for each variety to unfold its own character. The wines are extremely long-lived, with the best examples lasting for 20-30 years.

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Other Varieties

Other Varieties

There are over 200 different grape varieties used in modern wine making (from a total of over 1000). Most lesser known blends and varieties are traditional to specific parts of the world.

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Reviews

Customer reviews

Wine Advocate92/100

Critic reviews

Wine Advocate92/100
The 2007 Chateau Musar, the flagship estate red, is the typical, roughly equal blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Carignan and Cinsault, aged for 12 months in French oak. Adding a much needed layer of concentration to the Hochar also reviewed this issue, this also provides more focus and intensity, while still seeming to be a civilized Musar. Finishing with complexity, earthy nuances and a gamey hint, it is a relatively polished Musar that shows both finesse and flavor on the finish. After opening rather soft and reticent, the underlying power emerged strongly. There are tannins lurking underneath, of course. Add the acidity, providing some steel and intensity, and this becomes a completely different wine with three hours of decanting, up to and including, what seemed to me to be a high-toned nuance, a hint of Amarone that, hopefully, stays under control. With the right food match, you might not notice. Like most Musars, this is a bottling that has a lot of stuff going on. Take it for what it is. In any event, if I didn't have it in front of me at home the whole time, I'd think someone had switched my glasses from start to finish. It went from nice to it's Musar! It should age pretty nicely they always do but this opened so well that I would not chastise anyone who decided to dive in now. That said, as this became more powerful and astringent with decanting, it certainly demonstrated that it will benefit from more cellaring. It also proved that it could use another year or two to settle down. Let's take the aging curve in stages. Drink 2016-2032.
Mark Squires - 26/06/2014 Read more