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Producer: Chateau KsaraGrape Varieties: Syrah (40%), Cabernet Sauvignon (30%) and Cabernet Franc (30%).Optimum Drinking: Within 5 yearsWine Style: Blueberry fruit with supple tanninsAlcohol by Volume: 13%Closure: Natural CorkCountry: Lebanon
Ksara Estate lies in the heart of the Bekaa Valley near Baalbeck, where the ruins of the Temple of Bacchus from the Greco-Roman era can be found. It is called Ksara because it was the site of a ksar or fortress at the time of the Crusades. The property was acquired by the Jesuits in 1857 when it was already famed as a vineyard, and they maintained the tradition of winemaking on the estate. Climatic conditions in the Bekaa provide Ksara's vineyards with exceptional advantages. There is almost no rainfall during the growing season and diseases seldom strike the vines. Their grapes can be considered to be grown organically because pesticides and herbicides are not used. Harvesting is done by hand, but there is no need for selection because the grapes achieve full ripeness without fear of rot. Château Ksara is the largest producer in the Lebanon with 334 hectares and 38% of the local production.
Sharp changes in diurnal temperatures were registered during the ripening period, which increased the period between véraison and the harvest to over 120 days.
Ksara's vineyards are located in the central and western Bekaa Valley at an average altitude of 1,000 metres. The Bekaa enjoys dry summers and has the advantage of its own natural water table, courtesy of the melting snow that runs off the Lebanon and Anti-Lebanon mountain ranges, therefore no irrigation is needed in the vineyards. The slopes on either side of the valley and the valley itself create a unique microclimate in which the cool nights compensate for the hot summer days. Vines are either double Guyot or cordon trained and their grapes can be considered to be grown organically because of the very limited used of sulphur-based pesticides. Harvesting is manual and the standard yield of the vineyards is between 40 and 45 hectolitres per hectare.
The grapes were manually harvested at optimal ripeness, destemmed and fermented at 26 to 30°C. Transfer to vat took place for 12 to 15 days after fermentation. The drawn off and pressed wines were separated and malolactic fermentation took place. The wine was racked and each variety was matured in oak casks. The wine then aged for 12 months before being blended, fined and bottled.
This wine with its dark ruby-red colour is a fusion of finesse and elegance; with notes of beautifully integrated oak and vanilla enveloped in supple, pure and round tannins and a wonderful persistence on the palate.
Serve at 15 to 18°C with red meat, game and oven-roasted vegetables.
Syrah 40%, Cabernet Franc 30%, Cabernet Sauvignon 30%
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