Chateau Musar Bekaa Valley 2000
Chateau Musar Bekaa Valley 2000
The 2000 CHATEAU MUSAR is tight, bright and tannic, astringent on the finish, rustic and earthy, well laced with barnyard notes. Some will hate it. This, I think, will be the most divisive of the Musar reds reviewed this issue. It is a more or less an equal blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Cinsault and Carignan, aged for one year in French oak and late released only in 2007.
Source: 187, The Wine Advocate; Issue Date: 27th Feb 2010 (RP-89+)
The 2000 CHATEAU MUSAR is tight, bright and tannic, astringent on the finish, rustic and earthy, well laced with barnyard notes. Some will hate it. This, I think, will be the most divisive of the Musar reds reviewed this issue. It is a more or less an equal blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Cinsault and Carignan, aged for one year in French oak and late released only in 2007. The crisp character makes it refreshing and delivers lingering flavors to the palate on the finish, but it also means there is not a lot of fleshiness here, the texture is not particularly caressing and it has a certain austerity that some will appreciate -- and many won’t. Yet, it evolved beautifully in the glass and I greatly admired its structure, which should guarantee its ability to age gracefully for a long while in the cellar. If you like the acidity and power, which may cause some to dismiss this as simply too rustic, the barnyard component will be where many people still get off the bus. I liked it more and more as it aired out and came together in the glass, although my love for it never quite equaled my admiration for its good intentions. I suspect many will not warm up to it, so this is certainly one of those times that the score here is a lot less important than the tasting note. Its age-worthiness gives me some optimism that it will come together with more time in the cellar, but it won’t shock me if it does not. It was entrancing at times and it certainly has an upside that few wines in this region have. Five years might do it a lot of good, but let’s be conservative at the moment. Others will be a lot happier with the ’02 Hochar or the ’01 Musar reviewed this issue. Drink now-2025.
Drink Date 2010 - 2025
Overview: Average rainfall in winter with some cold days, followed by pleasant weather which allowed flowering to develop well
in the spring. However, things started to deviate from the norm with the arrival of summer; July was unusually hot with
some very dry days when temperatures exceeded 35°C, followed by a hotter than average August.
Harvest started on the 6th September, one week earlier than usual. The crop was healthy and quality good but yields were
down by 15%. The grapes were sweet but tannic with good acidity.
Grape Varietals: Cabernet Sauvignon, Cinsault, Carignan
Winemaking: Fermentation progressed well - slowly with very little heat as it was naturally under control. Interestingly, the level of
alcohol was higher than usual - almost the same as 1999. All in all, it was an easy harvest and an easy fermentation with
hardly any problems and malolactic fermentation followed its normal course.
Tasting Notes: When tasted in early November 1999, the wines were tannic, concentrated and powerful, but very well balanced.
Now at 20 years after the vintage, the 2000 holds on to its primary fruit whilst really starting to reveal the classic Musar
identity, balancing out the characteristic sweet spice and desiccated fruit notes with more evolved elements of leather, tar,
tobacco and a hint of game.
These complex aromas and flavours are lifted with a fresh lick of acidity that will ensure the wine will continue to age
gracefully for years to come.
A Cabernet Sauvignon year. One of my clients called it a lioness of a wine. Closer to a fine Bordeaux but it will age gratifyingly well
for a very long time. And you can drink it with pleasure now: all that soft, velvety, peppery, spicy, earthy, even chocolatey quality is
already there in spades - Simon Hoggart, The Spectator, February 2007
Garnet red with a tawny rim, lovely rose petal freshness on the nose, stunning for a 19 year old wine, beautifully textured palate,
length, finesse and a harmonious finish - Steven Spurrier, September 2019
Reasonably mature. Brick red rim, autumnal faded red bowl. Mouth-watering acidity on the nose that can be smelt a foot away.
Lovely aromas of damp autumn forests, decaying leaves and wood combine with a slightly chocolatey sweetness. A little spirit
developed over the course of the evening: almost a Drambuie or Grand Marnier character. Slightly sweet on the palate with very long,
classic autumnal Musar notes, soft, mature and Old World, braced by that lovely acidity. Still full flavoured and crisp on its long,
lingering aftertaste, finishing with notes of liquorice and sherbet - Bartholomew Broadbent, October 2019
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