Old Vine Lebanese Cinsault arrives in UK

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Drinks: Drinks, Wines
Location: Lebanon

History will be made next week with the arrival in the UK of the first old-vine Cinsault from Lebanon for over 40 years.

The Domaine des Tourelles Vieilles Vignes Cinsault 2014, from 50-year-old vines grown at 1000m altitude in the Bekaa Valley, is being unveiled at a special tasting in London on Tuesday 31 January.

dme tourelles

The first old-vine Cinsault from Lebanon for 40 years

It is imported by Boutinot, and has a trade price of £10.83 ex VAT a bottle (£65/case of six).

Cinsault was widely planted in the Bekaa in the 19th century, but fell out of favour with winemakers who tended to prefer ‘nobler’ varieties such as Cabernet Sauvignon.

The wine from this particular vineyard used to be blended away, but following the purchase of the land by Domaine des Tourelles, the decision has been made to launch it as a stand-alone wine.

Fermented in concrete tanks, the wine spends eight months in used French oak barrels.

‘We know that historically Cinsault in the Bekaa Valley has produced some fantastic wines with huge ageing potential,’ says winemaker, Faouzi Issa. ‘I believe this supple wine beautifully reflects the terroir of the Bekaa Valley, with plenty of ageing potential.’

Imbibe readers will be able to put Issa’s claim to the test, by tasting a 1976 Domaine des Tourelles Cinsault with him at the launch – alongside other 100% Cinsauts from around the world.

The launch takes place at Carousel, London, at 10.30. Places are limited, but interested Imbibe readers should contact Madeleine Waters on madeleine@weareco.co.uk.

About Author

Chris Losh

After five years working on My Weekly magazine (during which time he learned how to write horoscopes and make things out of mince) in 1995 Chris Losh entered the world of drinks writing and, despite all advice from his doctor – and the wishes of most South African winemakers – has stayed there ever since. He began on Wine and Spirit International, editing it for several years before moving on to edit Wine Magazine. Both publications have since gone the way of the Dodo, but he claims to have nothing to do with their demise, and his alibi appears solid, since he was freelance writing for anyone who would pay him at the time. In 2007, he helped to set up both Imbibe magazine and the Sommelier Wine Awards, and has spent much of the last three years eating, drinking, and listening to French sommeliers talk about minerality. In 2009 he was shortlisted for the Louis Roederer Feature Writer of the Year, but didn’t win. Perhaps he should have stuck to horoscopes. And mince.

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