Château Kefraya: new vintages

Château Kefraya's vineyards in the West Bekaa

Location: Kefraya, Bekaa Valley

Established: 1978

Date: April 4, 2012

Tasted at: Kefraya tasting room, Beirut

Production: 2.2 million bottles

Area under vine: 300 ha

Varietals: Bourboulenc, Cabernet Sauvignon, Carignan, Chardonnay, Cinsault, Clairette, Grenache, Mourvèdre, Muscat, Sauvignon Blanc, Syrah, Tempranillo, Ungi Blanc, Verdejo and Viognier



Blanc de Blancs 2011

Grapes: Sauvignon Blanc, Clairette, Bourboulenc, Muscat, Ugni Blanc, Chardonnay and Verdejo

Alc: 12.5%

Green gold hue. Pineapple and stony citrus on the nose with a sweetness on the mid palate giving way to nuts and exotic fruits at the back. Good structure with decent acidity.


Château 2011

Grapes: Chardonnay and Viognier

Alc: 12.5%

Oak aging: Part of the Chardonnay fermentation is in wood.

A step up from the Blanc de Blancs, this new wine more than ably fills the vacant mid-to-upper range segment. Again the green gold hue but there is a ‘warmer’ and nuttier nose. In the mouth, there is good acidity and notes of fresh fruit underpinned with lovely savory notes.


Vissi D’Arte 2009

Grapes: Chardonnay and Viognier

Alc: 14%

Oak aging: Eight months in oak.

The wine has a green straw hue. On the nose there is vanilla, cocoa, exotic fruits and slight floral notes. In the mouth, the wine is balanced with a lovely textured toffee and honey profile with less of the wood present in previous vintages. The apple in the Chardonnay is very present at the finish. What wood is there, is more subdued and integrated and the overall effect is a seriously grown up wine that is both layered and complex.




Myst 2011

Grapes: Cinsault, Grenache, Tempranillo, Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon, Carignan, Mourvèdre, Cabernet Franc and Marselan

Alc: 13%

According to winemaker Fabrice Guiberteau, the wine is made from young vines to ensure freshness and acidity. As there should be. The color is deep blush and the nose fruity and aromatic as you might expect. In the mouth, there is further red fruit with a seam of mild spiciness running through the wine.


Château 2011

Grapes: Cinsault, Grenache, Tempranillo, Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon and Cabernet Franc

Alc: 13%

Pinky blush hue. The nose is cool and refined. In the mouth there is bags of acidity and an elegant structure, with a bouquet of forest fruit that tumbles across the palate all the way to a soft and controlled finish.




Les Breteches 2009

Grapes: Cinsault, Tempranillo, Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon and Carignan

Alc: 13.5%

Dark scarlet hue. Perfumed cherry nose from the Cinsault with added spices and berries that evolve to a pleasant “meatiness”. In terms of aromas you could ask for more from a wine in this segment. In the mouth there is good tannic structure and equally impressive balance and a sustained and powerful finish of cherries and green pepper. (NB This is a wine that deserves to shake off its local reputation as a “basic” red because it is anything but. The Cinsault is in stunning form and Guiberteau says he wants to replant more of it.)


Château 2008

Grapes: Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah and Carignan

Alc: 13%

Oak aging: 14 months in barrels of various ages

Dark blackcurrant hue. Intense, brooding nose of black fruits and brambles and a wonderful minerality. In the mouth, there are fresh tannins and cherries and wild raspberry. Needs time, but the tannic runes augur well.


Comte de M 2008

Grapes: Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah and Carignan

Alc: 13

Oak aging: 14 months in barrels of various ages

Kefraya’s most famous wine, one which came to international prominence after Robert Parker awarded it 91/100, a rating for “an outstanding wine of exceptional complexity and character.” That was then and this is now. The 08 has the unmistakable CDM signature nose that is both mineral and fruity and reeking of rich leather, tobacco and spice. Thdre is cassis, chocolate and spearmint in the mouth. The tannins are integrated and should age well. This is a serious wine for grown up drinkers and a wonderful of example of how full bodied Lebanese reds are shaking of the wood and showing off their wonderful range of flavors. Only 5,000 cases made each year.


Pudding wine


Lacrima D’Oro 2004

Grape: Clairette

Alc: 14%

Late picked Clairette with added eau de vie creates a pudding wine filled with notes of honey, citrus and nuts. In the mouth, it is richly fruity, heady and delicate with sustained length. An elegant and thoughtful wine.



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