Lebanon: 9,000 years of wine history
Wine has been made in Lebanon since 7000BC, although it was around 3,000BC that the Phoenicians spread viniculture throughout the Mediterranean and further afield, via their trading ships. Fast forward several thousand years to 1857 when French Jesuit priests planted Cinsault vines in the Bekaa Valley at what is now Château Ksara, marking the genesis of the modern industry. The presence of the French between the World Wars cemented a lasting wine culture in the country. Most wineries stopped production during the bloody 15-year civil war from 1975-90, but when the guns fell silent, Lebanon joined the wine revolution.