Lebanon MW trip

 

 

Trip hosted by Union Vinicole du Liban (UVL), 7-12 April 2019.

A small group of 14 MWs from nine different countries travelled north from Beirut to Batroun, back to Ghazir via Byblos, further south to Bhamdoun before crossing Mount Lebanon to Bekaa, and then all the way down to Jezzine. On all our stops, we were fantastically welcomed by several wineries on visits, lunches, walkaround tastings and dinners.

The country has possibly the oldest traces of wine production with wine trading dating back to over 4,000 BC and perhaps even older. From ports like Byblos, the great tradesmen of Phoenicians travelled to Egypt and the Mediterranean islands. Even with an impressive rich wine history, Lebanese wines are not as globally spread as one would expect.

On the trip we got a taste of it all, and what we tasted and saw gives great hopes for a more visible international interest and presence for Lebanese wines.

Lebanon has so much to offer: a very long and rich and broad history, and one of the best cuisines – if not the best – in the world; wineries that represent great history and are also cultural treasures; interesting indigenous varieties like Merwah, which stands well alone or in a blend; old wine tradition and knowledge influenced by the classic French winemaking; modern international influence, and; young energetic generations eager to take over the tradition and bring it further with innovation and experimentation.

Mai Tjemsland MW
May 2019