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Lebanon’s new wave: Top estates and 10 fascinating wines to try

The strong contingent of innovative producers and determined young talent in this mountainous nation of the eastern Mediterranean are placing an increasing focus on the identity and flavours of their historic local grape varieties.

There is a well-worn media narrative on Lebanese wine – let’s call it the ‘plucky little Lebanon’ story – that goes something like this: despite the devastating civil war of 1975-1990, one of the world’s worst economic crises, state capture by a corrupt, self-serving political elite, a massive explosion in the port of Beirut in 2020 and the influx of 1.5 million Syrian refugees, the country’s wine industry has somehow survived, and we should buy Lebanese wine out of solidarity.

Scroll down to see tasting notes and scores for 10 Lebanese wines

This is a narrative that may once again find expression amid the latest outbreak of instability in the wider region. As this issue of Decanter was going to press, the eruption of a new and serious conflict to Lebanon’s south, in Israel and Gaza, was raising the potential of the country again being drawn into regional hostilities.

The new Lebanon: Joy’s 10 fascinating wines to try

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