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Harvesting at Chateau Vineyards


Kassatly Chtaura is a beverage company in Chtaura, Beqaa Valley, Lebanon. Founded in 1974 by Akram Kassatly, the company concentrated in its beginning on soft and alcoholic beverages.
Mr. Kassatly's original ambition has been, since the foundation of the company, the production of a quality wine, being himself a graduate in Oenology from the University of Burgundy in Dijon, France. He wanted to perpetuate the family tradition ; his father Nicolas Kassatly has started his wine business in 1919.
The first wines from Chateau Ka in the Lebanese Bekka Valley were bottled in 2005, under the leadership of Akram Kassatly the founder of Kassatly Chtaura. The Chateau Ka wines over the past decade have won a multitude of national wine awards, and proudly represent fine winemaking in Lebanon. The quality wine range from Chateau Ka includes a selection of premium red wines including Fleur de Ka and Source de Rouge.

Bekaa Valley (general view)


Yellow Road Questions answered by Michelle Ragy, Chateau Ka

1 - I read on your website that Kassatly Chtaura was established in 1974 by President and CEO Akram Kassatly. Mr. Kassatly had the idea of creating the first bottled Jallab for home-preparation."
And what is "Jallab" - Fruit Jams, Fruit Juices, Smoothies?

Jallab is a fruit syrup that is made from dates, carob, grape molasses, and rose water. It is very popular during the months of Ramadan. Kassatly is especially known for their Jallab syrup

2 - Is it really that Château Ka is the only winery in Lebanon that produces wine entirely from their own vineyards? ..
Château Ka does produce wine entirely from our grapes, and even sells part of the harvest to other wineries in Lebanon. But we do not have the info to know which wineries produce from their own harvests/buy from other wineries.
Harvester

Chateau vineyards view


3 - In which European countries can we taste your wine?
Our wine is available in France, London, Sweden, Norway, and Switzerland.

4 - Share your successes in winemaking: awards, prizes ...


WINE MEDALS / AWARDS

• IWSC :
- Silver for Fleur de Ka 2006
- Silver for Source de Rouge 2011
- Silver for Source Blanche 2011
- Bronze for Cadet de Ka 2010
- Bronze for Cadet de Ka 2009

• IWC :

- Bronze for Fleur de Ka 2006
- Bronze for Source Rouge 2011
- Silver for Cadet de Ka 2009
- Silver: fleur de ka 2007 (in 2014)
- Bronze: rosé 2013 (in 2014)
- Commended: source de rouge 2012
- Silver = 91 points: Fleur de Ka 2008 (in 2018)
- Bronze = 86 points: Cadet de Ka 2015 (in 2018)


• DWWA Decanter:
- Commended for Source de Rouge 2011
- Commended for Cadet de Ka 2010
- Silver medal: Source Blanche 2012
- Silver Medal: Source Rosée 2013

MUNDUS VINI
- Silver. Source rouge 2011

NY ULTIMATE BEVERAGE
91 points for source de rouge 2012

In the Chateau cellar

In the Chateau cellar



5 - Is there a wine tasting at your winery?
Yes, of course. We have our wine cave specially designed for our wine tastings.

6 - What is your favorite wine (red or white)? And why? Please name your best wines.
One of our Best wines to today is our Fleur de Ka 2005 - a powerful cuvée of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and Syrah. It has a spicy bouquet with notes of sweet peppers, presenting subtle tanning with fruity , licorice aroma and a delicious smooth, velvety finish. It is best served between 16-18 C with fine red meat or cheese.

7 - The readers of the Yellow Road are always interested in hearing about the owners of the winery, how did they achieve success in their business?

Akram Kassatly Interview:

The family business was started in 1919 by my father Nicolas Kassatly. I am just developing his mission, as the company has expanded into many different categories of beverages.
The 1975 civil war and its complications were our biggest challenges as it was full of instability and insecurity, roads were blocked, shops and banks were closed etc. After surpassing that, we faced new oppositions with every brand we created, mainly by its direct international competitor, and we came ahead in many places.
Excellence in quality has always been our #1 priority. It is the backbone of who we are and is the main reason for our success both locally and abroad.
Our products success varies with the territory, we are lucky to have good partners around the world
• Syrups, mainly Jallab, Liqueurs, FruitasticJuices and Jams under the Kassatly Chtaurabrand, are the biggest locally, and in the GCC region (Syrups only)
• Alcoholic RTD under the Buzz Brand are big locally, in Iraq, Syria, Carribean countries, but also had their day under the sun in many African countries
• Freez, the non-alcoholic soda with 20 flavors was lately updated to a one of a kind superior look colored bottle that is exclusive to us, and it has done wonders in its existing markets all over the world (the MENA region, Europe, Canada, USA, some African countries, and the Carribean)
• Chateau Ka wines are big locally, in Dubai’s Duty Free, in France, Belgium, and in the UK
• Mezza, the flavored Malt Beverage is expanding in some Arab countries, and now in Europe. Soon it will sell in the USA, and Canada.
• Beirut Beer (born in 2014) has surpassed all expectations locally and is growing in new markets (Europe, Canada, USA, Iraq, Syria, UAE)
We are known to be very close to our customers and their needs. We sometimes create a demand for a new product, as we heavily advertise.
Lots of R&D, travel, a good vision, and most importantly a great team allowed for the realization of a great product that pleases all tastes. What makes it unique is the flavors that we chose, the packaging, smart advertising, and superior quality.
This however, is not the end, as we keep looking for new opportunities, new markets and new trends.




8 - List, if possible, a set (gift box) of three or four of your own wines (red and white), which, in your opinion, that can decorate the "poster" of your farm
Chateau Wines...

Chateau Wines...


9 - Does your winery participate in any cultural projects?
We are part of UVL - Union Vinicole of Lebanon. In UVL we increase awareness and unite Lebanese wine makers. We were recently part of a video that was released to increase awareness of Lebanese wine that can be found on our instagram @chateaukawine
You can read more about UVL through the following link: http://www.lebanonwines.com/about-us/

10 - If it's not a secret, tell us about your plans for the future ….

We unfortunately cannot disclose any plans about the future…but something you may want to note is our new waste water treatment plant that was recently put together and is fully functioning in Chtaura. You can read all about it through the following link: http://kassatly.net/esmp-report--environmental-and-social-management-plan.pdf

11 - What is your choice for "Yellow Road"?
Our choice is Source Blanche - a blend of Muscat and Chardonnay with undertones of honey and exotic fruits. It is excellent as an aperitif and with seafood. The wine is heavily praised as one of the tastiest across Lebanon when we have direct feedback from our customers, as it is fresh and light on the tongue - always leaving you wanting more.
Source Blanche


12 - You can offer the most beautiful view (favorite point) of the vineyards or the surrounding landscape. May I ask you to take one or two photos of your favorite places? What does your castle look like?

Chateau Ka vineyards in summer

Chateau Ka vineyards in winter

Harvesting at Chateau Vineyards

Panoramic view of the Chateau vineyards




I thank Michelle Ragy,
for helping prepare this publication.

Sergey Evtuhov, author of the project "Yellow Road".
evtuhov@yahoo.com
Jalal Nakad, the Master Distiller and wine maker , studied in France Oenology, and he has been in charge since 2012


Grapes from Lebanon, Bekaa Valley



Chateau Nakad, it’s the first Lebanese family owned winery in Lebanon, established by Joseph Nakad
Salim Nakad

Winery History in Pictures (1)

Winery History in Pictures (2)


Yellow Road Questions answered by Lara Nakad, Marketing Manager


1 - Why is your vineyard called “Chateau Nakad?”

It’s our Inherited Family Name

2 - Please tell us a little about yourself
The story of Château Nakad is first and foremost that of a family, of three generations of winemakers from the Bekaa Valley, whose blood runs with passion for soil, wine and grapes.
In 1923, during the French Mandate in Lebanon, Joseph Nakad’s wine became a favorite among France’s deployed soldiers. The contingent commissioned large quantities of his fresh and lively vintages to lift the spirits of the troops.
Then, his son Salim took over the business. In his hands Château Nakad became one of the leading enterprises on the Lebanese wine scene.
Today, Joseph’s grandchildren, guided by their father Salim, are ensuring the prosperity of the label, consolidating its reputation both within Lebanon and on the international wine market.
The winery is located in the village of Jdita/Chtaura, in the Bekaa Valley, near the most fertile farmlands of the region. More importantly, it is built on the remains of wine cellars dating back to the Bronze Age.
The Nakad family currently produces red, rosé, white and sweet wine as well as the traditional Lebanese anisette liquor, Arak As-Samir. Another outstanding recent creation is the winery’s very own Afandello, an artisanal orange-flavored liquor.
Another recent masterpiece, is the MISK, a mastiha liquor

3 - There are no restaurants in Jdita, can tourists have a bite to eat at the winery?
There are restaurants in Jdita, Chtaura and Zahle; the Bekaa is a Touristic destination

4 - Which tasty traditional food in the Bekaa Valley?
All Lebanese Food, Mezze, Tabbouli, Fattoush, Best Grilled Meat “Mashawi”
Lebanese Restaurant in Vancouver Canada

Lebanese Restaurant in Vancouver Canada

Lebanese Restaurant in Vancouver Canada


5 - What is your favorite wine (red or white)? And why?
I like both Red and White, however I am more into the red wine: full bodied, balanced and aromatic

6 - List, if possible, a set (gift box) of three or four of your own wines (red and white), which, in your opinion, may be worthy of the presentation of your farm
Wines from Chateau Nakad


7- Share your successes in winemaking: awards, prizes...
We were the only Lebanese winery to win the GRAND GOLD medal in SMV Canada; others: Concours Mondial de Bruxelles (Gold), FIWA (Gold), BRWSC (Gold)

8 - You can offer the most beautiful view (favorite point) of the vineyards or the surrounding landscape. May I ask you to take one or two photos of your favorite places?
Our vineyards are located on the Hills of the Bekaa Valley.
In producing our wine we work meticulously to select the finest grapes and the varietals (cépage). Quality is always our chief consideration.
“Coteaux de la Bekaa,” written on our label, and meaning vineyards grown on the slopes of the Bekaa, highlights the uniqueness of our chosen terroir. Our hill-grown grapes produce wines with distinct aromas and flavors. Unlike vines grown on the Bekaa’s plains, the drainage of the hills limits the dilution of our grapes’ flavor. This rare grape selection helps enable us to produce extraordinary wines that add real diversity to a fast-growing wine industry in Lebanon

9 - What is your choice for "Yellow Road"?
Our White Wine Bloom

Bloom White Wine...

and Rose Wine


10- If it's not a secret, tell us about your plans for the future
We are Honored to maintain our Heritage and expand our export market

11 - What white wine producer (from Lebanon or another country) would you recommend for Yellow Road?
This is a matter of taste, I like Full Bodied White Wines, enriched on their lees.
Chateau Flowers

and Fruits...



Festivals photos...


Sergey Evtuhov, author of the project "Yellow Road"
evtuhov@yahoo.com
На "Желтой дороге" новый гость из Ливана.
Винодельня "Аврора" расположена в 60 километрах к северу от Бейрута, в восточных средиземноморских горах Батрун. Основанная в 2006 году страстным энологом из небольшой деревни Рахкедде, винодельня началась как хобби выходного дня. Сегодня "Аврора" - это бутик-винодельня, с использованием современных и экологически чистых технологий, выпускающая до 20 000 бутылок вина в год.
И Батрун, Бхамдун и долина Бекаа - каждый регион известен своим удивительным качеством красных, белых и игристых вин.
Сбор урожая на виноградниках "Авроры"

Северный Ливан


На вопросы "Желтой дороги" отвечаетAndrea Geara, винодельня "Аврора"

1 - Почему ваш виноградник называется «Аврора»
Название Аврора вдохновлено деревней, где выращиваются виноградные лозы "Аура" в северных средиземноморских горах Ливана. Аврора также означает и первый свет в небе перед восходом солнца, рассвету или l'Aurore на латыни.
 
2 - Андреа, расскажи немного о себе
Я дочь основателя и винодела, поэтому второе поколение отвечает за винодельню "Аврора".
Я всегда интересовалась виноделием, собирая урожай каждую осень. Когда я стала старше, я была вдохновлена вином, как продуктом страсти, и я присоединился к команде в конце 2014 года после того, как я решила поменять свою карьеру.
Тогда на винодельне производили около 7000 бутылок в год, мы были гаражным вином. В 2015 году мы с отцом приняли решение "вырастить" Аврору очень солидно и стабильно. С тех пор мы производим около 20 000 бутылок в год.
Сборщик винограда...

Горные виноградники "Авроры"


3 - Рахкиде - это уже северный Ливан, а не долина Бекаа. В чем разница между винами Северного Ливана и винами долины Бекаа ?
Во-первых, мы - горное вино, а не Бекаа, долина или плоскость. И поэтому наш микроклимат сильно отличается. Самое главное, что в горах наблюдается постоянное изменение температуры между днем ​​и ночью, но температура не сильно меняется в течение дня. Мы также не испытываем холод или экстремальные температуры, потому что, хотя мы на высоте 900 м, мы все еще близки к Средиземному морю. Это идеально для стабильной медленной зрелости винограда, что помогает нам развить хорошую сложность в винах, даже если наши урожаи могут быть ниже. Батрун, северный винодельческий регион, известен производством бутиковых вин, вин, которые трудно найти и произвести. Подобно тому, как мы сравниваем Напа и Орегон, или Бургундия и Бордо. Размеры винодельни относительно небольшие. Кроме того, винодельня "Аврора" имеет особый стиль, в котором мы стараемся выделить наш терруар. Это достигается путем сбора ягод при более низком содержании сахара, чтобы стимулировать более высокую кислотность и более низкий процент алкоголя, а также путем производства отдельных сортов. Поскольку мы находимся на склоне, виноградники должны быть посажены на террасах, чтобы удерживать дождевую воду.

4 - Какая самая вкусная традиционная еда в Северном Ливане?
1. Тебле, сырое киббе (козье мясо), очень тонко измельченное со специями
2. maakroun bi toum, (Горные ньокки с сыром в чесночном соусе)
см ссылку
http://globaltableadventure.com/recipe/mountain-gnocchi-maakroun/
3. Табуле, конечно
На дегустации вин

Блюда из сырого мяса


5 - Какое ваше любимое вино (красное или белое)? И почему?
У меня нет одного вина, которое я предпочитаю, потому что каждая обстановка требует разного вина, но обычно, когда я пью вино, это красное вино, особенно хорошая бордоская смесь. Классический, хорошо сбалансированный и всегда удовлетворяющий мою тягу. Каберне Совиньон, мерло, иногда с оттенком Каберне Фран.

6 - Перечислите, если возможно, набор (подарочную коробку) из трех или четырех ваших собственных вин (красного и белого), которые, по вашему мнению, могут достойно представлять вашу ферму.
Что обычно представляет Аврору - это наши четыре основных вина. В основном, наше первое вино, Шато (Каберне Совиньон и Мерло), Каберне Франк 100%, Кристалл (Шардоне), Кюве N (Совиньон Блан) и Пино Нуар
Вино Cabernet Franc 100%

Вино Crystal (Chardonnay)


7- Поделитесь своими успехами в виноделии: награды, призы ...
Decanter 90 баллов за Каберне Фран (Cabernet Franc) на World Wine Awards, Серебряная медаль
Золотая медаль для Chateau у Gilbert et Gaillard Tasting
Jeune Talent вернулся, когда мы впервые начали дегустацию местных вин в 2009 году

Натюрморт номер 1(с Pinot Noir)

Натюрморт номер 2(с закусками)

Натюрморт номер 3...

8 - Вы можете предложить самый красивый вид (любимая точка) на виноградник или окружающий ландшафт. Могу ли я попросить вас сделать одну или две фотографии ваших любимых мест?

9 - Какой ваш выбор для «Желтой дороги»?
Аврора Шардоне (Aurora Chardonnay) , это наше первое белое вино, которое только будет произведено. Мы назвали его Кристаллом (Crystal), из-за его прозрачности и яркости.

10- Если не секрет, расскажите нам о своих планах на будущее ....
Наша цель - поставить Ливан на карту винного мира. С самого начала мы работали над созданием уникальных нетипичных вин с большим характером. Поэтому мы планируем продолжать добавлять новые вина в портфель.
В следующем году мы будем производить оливковое Шардоне, это вино, которому мы искренне рады.

11 - Какого производителя белого вина (из Ливана или другой страны) вы бы порекомендовали для «Желтой дороги»?
Я пробовала белое вино из Австрии еще в 2018 году, оно тоже было особенным. Это был Эммерих Нолл (Emmerich Noll), я думаю, это был их Рислинг.

Сергей Евтухов, автор проекта "Желтая дорога"
evtuhov@yahoo.com
New guest from Lebanon on the Yellow Road
The Aurora winery is located 60 kilometres north of Beirut, in the eastern Mediterranean mountains of Batroun. Founded in 2006 by a passionate oenologist from the small village of Rachkedde, the winery began as a weekend hobby. Today, Aurora is a boutique winery using modern and eco-friendly techniques, producing up to 20,000 bottles of wine per year.
Batroun, Bhamdoun and the Bekaa Valley. Each region is known for its amazing quality of red, white and sparkling wines.

Harvesting in the Aurora vineyards

Northern Lebanon


Yellow Road Questions answered by Andrea Geara, Aurora winery

1 - Why is your vineyard called “Aurora Winery”
The name Aurora is inspired by the village where the vines are grown "Aoura" in the northern mediterranean mountains of Lebanon. Aurora Also refers to the first light in the sky before sunrise, the dawn or l'Aurore in Latin.

2 - Andrea, please tell us a little about yourself
I am the daughter of the founder and winemaker, so the second generation responsible for Aurora Winery.
I have always been interested in winemaking, joining the harvest every fall. As I grew older I was inspired by wine as a product of passion, and I joined the team end of 2014 after I decided to shift my career from social development.
Back then, we were producing close to 7000 bottles per year, we were a garage wine. In 2015, My father and I made the decision to grow Aurora in a very solid and stable way. Ever since, we have been growing to produce around 20,000 bottles a year.
Harvester...

Aurora Mountain Vineyards


3 - Rachkideh is already Northern Lebanon, and not the Bekaa Valley. What is the difference between the wines of Northern Lebanon and the wines of the Bekaa Valley?
First, we are a mountain wine, as opposed to Bekaa which is a valley or a plane. Our microclimate differs quite a bit. Most importantly, the mountain enjoys a steady change in temperature between night and day, temperatures do not vary too much throughout the day. We also do not experience frost or extreme temperatures, because although we are at 900m altitude, we are still close to the mediterranean. This is ideal for steady slow grape maturity, which helps us develop a nice complexity in the wines even though our yields might be lower. Batroun, the northern wine region, is known to produce boutique wines, wines that are hard to find and produce. Similar to how we compare Napa and Oregon, or Burgundy and Bordeaux. Winery sizes are relatively smaller. In addition, Aurora Winery has a particular style in which we focus on highlighting our terroir. This is done by picking at lower sugar levels to encourage higher acidity and lower alcohol percentages, and through producing single varietals. Because we are on a slope, the vineyards need to be planted on terraces to retain rainwater.

4 - Which tasty traditional food in the Northern Lebanon?
1. Tebleh, raw kibbe (goat meat) very finely grinded with spices
2. maakroun bi toum, (Mountain Gnocchi in raw Garlic sauce)
see link
http://globaltableadventure.com/recipe/mountain-gnocchi-maakroun/
3. Tabbouleh of Course
Winery Tasting

Raw Meat Dishes



5 - What is your favorite wine (red or white)? And why?

I do not have a single wine that I prefer, because each setting calls for a different wine, but usually my go to wine is Red wine, particularly a good bordeaux blend. Classic, well balanced, and always satisfies my craving. Cabernet Sauvignon, merlot, with a touch of Cabernet Franc sometimes.

6 - List, if possible, a set (gift box) of three or four of your own wines (red and white), which, in your opinion, may be worthy of the presentation of your farm.
What typically represents Aurora are our four main wines. Mainly, our first wine, The Chateau (Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot), Cabernet Franc 100%, Crystal (Chardonnay), Cuvee N (Sauvignon Blanc), and Pinot Noir
Cabernet Franc 100%

Crystal (Chardonnay)


7- Share your successes in winemaking: awards, prizes...

Decanter 90 points for the Cabernet Franc at the World wine Awards, Silver Medal
Gold Medal for the Chateau at the Gilbert et Gaillard Tasting
Jeune Talent back when we first started at the local wine tasting in 2009
Still life number 1 (with Pinot Noir)

Still life number 2 (with a snack)

Still life number 3...


8 - You can offer the most beautiful view (favorite point) of the vineyards or the surrounding landscape. May I ask you to take one or two photos of your favorite places?

9 - What is your choice for "Yellow Road"?
Aurora Chardonnay, it is our first white wine to be produced. We called it Crystal, because of its clarity and brightness.

10- If it's not a secret, tell us about your plans for the future ....
Our aim is to put Lebanon on the map in the world of wine. Since we started, we have been working on producing unique atypical wines with plenty of character. Therefore, our plan is to continue adding wines to are portfolio that stand out.
Next year we will be producing an oaked Chardonnay, this is a wine we are very excited about.

11 - What white wine producer (from Lebanon or another country) would you recommend for Yellow Road?
I tried a white wine from Austria back in 2018, it was also quite special. It was from Emmerich Knoll I believe it was their Riesling.

Sergey Evtuhov, author of the project "Yellow Road"
evtuhov@yahoo.com
Girls in the vineyard of WARDY Winery


The Temple of Bacchus at Baalbeck


For the first time on the Yellow Road, winemakers from Lebanon, Bekaa Valley.
Lebanon, in ancient times Phenicia, is considered the most likely homeland of wine. In the ancient world, it was the Phoenician wine, long before the glory of phalern, Cypriot and Chios wines, that was considered the best and most desirable product for the Egyptian, Greek, and then Roman nobility.

Zahlé is the capital and the largest city of Beqaa Governorate, Lebanon. With around 120,000 inhabitants, it is the third largest city in Lebanon after Beirut and Tripoli.
Zahlé is located 55 km east of the capital Beirut, close to the Beirut-Damascus road, and lies at the junction of the Lebanon mountains and the Beqaa plateau, at a mean elevation of 1,000 m. Zahlé is known as the "Bride of the Beqaa" and "the Neighbor of the Gorge" for its geographical location and attractiveness, but also as "the City of Wine and Poetry"It is famous throughout Lebanon and the region for its pleasant climate, numerous riverside restaurants and quality arak. Its inhabitants are predominantly Greek Catholic and are known as Zahlawis.
Zahlé - "the City of Wine and Poetry"


Yellow Road Questions answered by Khalil WARDY, General Manager


1 - The western Beqaa Valley in Lebanon, stretching between the mountain ranges of Lebanon and Anti-Lebanon, has been home to the vine for 6000 years ... Probably these were the oldest vineyards in the world?
Your vineyards are in the Beqaa Valley. Is the Beqaa Valley located at an altitude of 900 - 1000 meters above sea level? What is the beauty of wine made from grapes grown at such a height?

Geologically speaking the Beqaa Valley is a continuation of the fault that separated Africa from Asia… Red Sea – Dead Sea – Jordan Valley – Beqaa Valley.
It’s a high altitude plateau of 900-1200 meters above sea level separating the two mountain ranges of Lebanon and Anti-Lebanon that act as boundaries protecting the valley from the Mediterranean humidity to the west and desert heat to the east.
It receives enough rain in winter to nourish the many springs and subterranean water supply that is used for irrigation during the dry summer months.
The valley was the main source of grains to the Eastern Roman empire. It also produced grapes and opium. All three produce are carved on the entrance of the great temple of Bacchus, the god of wine, at Baalbeck; and all remain after more than 2000 years the main three produce of the Beqaa Valley… 2 legally and the 3rd illegally.
The entrance of the Temple of Bacchus at Baalbeck

The Beqaa Governorate constitutes the valley floor as well as the slopes of the Lebanon and Anti-Lebanon mountain ranges, which rise to an altitude of 2800m above sea level.

The Mediterranean climate, rainy and snowy in winter but completely dry in summer, with a large diurnal range is perfect for growing grapes. During the growing season temperatures can reach the mid 30s during the day thus achieving full ripening of the fruits, and drop down to the teens during the night thus retaining some acidity and freshness.
Our vineyards are mainly located in the central Beqaa around the city of Zahle, although we do have some in the Western Beqaa to the south and the Northern Beqaa next to the ancient city of Baalbeck. We have plans to plant new vineyards in 2020-2022 at high altitudes (1400m and above) on the eastern and western slopes. Once all these vineyards are planted we will have 35 hectares of vines.
The newly planted Sauvignon Blanc


2 - You are the fourth generation winemakers, but your winery is only 21 years old. Was your vineyard elsewhere? And why did you come to the Beqaa Valley?
We can trace our history in wine and arak making back to our great grandfather (from my mothers’ side of the family) who started a winery and distillery in Zahle in 1881. Both our parents’ families were involved in agriculture, arak, wine and food.
Khalil's grandfather at his winery in Aleppo, Syria

Our grandfather moved to Aleppo in Syria and started a winery/distillery over there while my father emigrated to Australia and opened a restaurant in Sydney. On his return he became a partner in Lebanon leading arak company “Gantous & Abou Raad” (established in 1893); we started producing wine in 1997 after we bought the full shares of the “Gantous & Abou Raad” company.
During a wine tasting visit


3- Dear Khalil, have you dreamed of becoming a winemaker from a young age? Or your choice was formed in more mature years?

Our winemaker is Diana Salameh Khalil who studied and worked in Burgundy before joining
our team in 2002.

4 - I want to acquaint readers of the Yellow Road with your achievements. Could you comment on several awards whose logos are posted on your site
(https://www.domainewardy.com/pages/our-international-awards-and-honorable-mentions)
New Awards at the Wardy winery


Over the years our wines and araks have won around 200 medals and awards in international competitions, we are particularly proud of the IWSC (International Wine and Spirit Competition) Trophy we won this year for our Indigenous grape white wine Obeidi.
A selection of our single-variety wines


5 - Please tell about your program: Domaine Wardy Club
The Domaine Wardy Club is designed for people who wish to buy online from our website and commit to three orders per year, they become our club members and will get their wines delivered to their address in Lebanon, they will also be entitled to discounts and have priority access to museum stock and special events.


6 - I have a standard question: List, if possible, a set (gift box) of three or four of your own wines (red and white), which, in your opinion, can decorate the "poster" of your farm.
But you have an interesting set of DW - 6Pack Club ... And what kind of wine is this in a tall yellow bottle?
Since 2019, you have changed labels on wines. For example, I really liked your “old” label on Beqaa Valley Red. Will the “old” labels remain on any bottles?

In 2018 we decided that the brand needs a major facelift and started working with the designer Tarek Atrissi who created a new logo for the brand as well as new labels for the wines (work still in progress).
We produce 4 sets of wines: Single-varieties, unoaked blends, oaked blends, limited editions.
The Single-varieties: eventually will be a set of 9 wines: 4 whites – Chardonnay, Obeidi, Sauvignon Blanc, Viognier; 5 reds – Cabernet Sauvignon, Cinsault, Merlot, Syrah, Tempranillo.
The labels for this set are intended to give as much information about each variety as possible.
The design, Middle-eastern mosaics indicating the origin of the wine – Lebanon.
The colors of each are related to the aromatic and flavor profile for each variety.
The wood texture, or lack of it, indicates whether the wine has been oaked or not.

Traditional Lebanese mosaics

The Sauvignon Blanc design image

The first seven of the single variety set

The unoaked blends: a set of 3 wines – white, red and rosé.
The labels are color-coded, inspired by vine tendrils and spell “Wardy” in Arabic.
The un-oaked blends

The oaked blends: Chateau les Cedres (red) and Perle du Chateau (white), yet to be re-designed.
The oaked blends

The limited editions: Private Selection Red, an unfiltered blend of Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot; Private Selection White (still in the old label), a wonderfully aromatic blend of Muscat and Viognier.
The limited editions

All the bottles will be unified by an artisanal rose (Wardy means rose in Arabic) in honor of our great-great-grand mother who was the matriarch of the family and whose first name was Wardy.


7 - Your vineyard is located next to Zahle City. Can it be reached on foot? Are there any restrictions on travellers in Lebanon these days?

Our winery and some of the vineyards are in and around the city of Zahle, the capital of the Beqaa. They are easily accessible, and we welcome visitors for wine tasting at our cellar in winter and at our vineyards in summer. The summer venue is a Bedouin tent that we erect in the vineyards next to our Arabian-horse stables (Wardy Stud).
Wardy Stud Arabian horses


8 - What is your choice for the Yellow Road?
For the Yellow Road, I will definitely choose our award-winning Obeidi in its two incarnations: as an oaked single-variety, and as part of our Beqaa Valley White unoaked blend (Obeidi-Viognier-Sauvignon Blanc).


9 - Which white wine producer (from Lebanon or another country) would you recommend for Yellow Road?
I’m very fond of an Australian Marsanne by Tahbilk winery, especially the “1927 vines Marsanne”.

10 - Do you have time for any cultural events?

Several years ago we commissioned artists to paint on our Jeroboam bottles that were auctioned at an impressive event, proceeds of which went for the Lebanese Red Cross and Syrian refugees, an event that we would like to repeat again.



The 2019 harvest

The Obeidi vineyards


I thank Rima Wardy, Managing Partner,
for helping prepare this publication.

Sergey Evtuhov, author of the project "Yellow Road".
evtuhov@yahoo.com
La Scolca and Bentley, together to toast to one hundred years of excellence lived with style, dynamism and passion.


Good news from Milan:
La Scolca winery celebrated its centenary with Bentley. Charming Chiara Soldati, the owner of a world-famous winery La Scolca with the Gavi Golden Bottle of the Gavi Black Label®
Our congratulations!


La Scolca and Bentley celebrated together - with the Gavi Golden Bottle of the Gavi Black Label®, the limited edition La Scolca created specifically for the centenary - the launch of the new Bentley Flying Spur presented on 6 November at Bentley's showroom in Milan, at a select audience of guests for an exclusive and refined event.

Excellence, style, dynamism and passion that go beyond time, fashions and boundaries. Two iconic brands that have been able to compete and conquer international markets thanks to their constant attention to innovation, technology and modernity, without sacrificing the taste for tradition and the expertise of artisans in the vineyard and in the factory.

Winery La Scolca - the very first participant in our project "Yellow Road"
https://www.obzor.lt/blogs/bp10429.html
Garnatxa del Po falls to a depth of 2 meters

Garnatxa del Po on the surface of the earth




Yellow Road Questions answered by Ruben Sabaté, CELLER CLOS93
A small interview with a small winery from a small Spanish town

1 - Why does your vineyard have such an unusual name CLOS93?
clos93 means that it is a family winery and that the vineyards are only property
Clos 93 vineyard view

2 - Please tell us about yourself and your role at the winery?
Enologist
3 - You have a small production. If not a secret, how many bottles of wine do you produce per year?
14.000 bottles.
4 - And how to survive such a small enterprise? Does your olive oil help?
In addition to my personal and family project in clos93 I advise on other wineries
Bodega clos93, celler


Clos 93 Winery Set


5 - I liked both the shape of the bottles and the design of the labels. And who is the author of your design?
Yes, both the idea and the design of all the labels and images of the winery are mine

6 - This is not to say that you have cheap wines. But Garnatxa del Po costs 120 euros per bottle. Is this price due to a small circulation?
The price is marked by its exclusivity worldwide, there is only one ... worldwide. In addition, its elaboration is very careful and laborious since it is buried 2 meters deep underground in the vineyard, the cork used for this is the most expensive in the market, its packaging is also very careful and original, since its individual box is of clay made one by one manually by a craftsman potter. only 85 bottles sold almost all before coming to light.
El Lloar, Tarragona

Bodega clos93, evening


7- And what is interesting about your other wines?
Each wine has its personal touch and they are worked differently, not only the varieties, but also the techniques used in both the vineyard and the winery

8 - You have the service "Wine Tourism". What dishes do you offer for wine?
Attached
9 - You can offer the most beautiful view (favorite point) of the vineyards or the surrounding landscape. May I ask you to take one or two photos of your favorite places?
Attached
10 - What is your choice for "Yellow Road"?
Vi de vila del Lloar

11 - What white wine producer (from Spain or another country) would you recommend for Yellow Road?

Clos Dominic White

12 - Do you think, for example, an exclusive sculpture could decorate your winery?

In my cellar are the best sculptures ... they are the old tools that my ancestors used to work the vineyard.

Sergey Evtuhov, author of the project "Yellow Road"
evtuhov@yahoo.com
The author on the background of his own work, October 2019



In Lithuania - the first monument to M. Cervantes!

The Obzor newspaper in Vilnius came out with the same headline. This newspaper is published in Russian in Lithuania. I am posting an article by the editor-in-chief of the newspaper, Alexander Shahov, who reported on the Mažoji galerija in the early days of October.

"At the beginning of this week, a monument to Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra, the world-famous Spanish writer, was inaugurated in Vilnius. The first in Lithuania!
This significant event in the field of culture was timed to the birthday of the author of the great Don Quixote.
Many residents of the Lithuanian capital, who consider themselves highly educated and culturally developed, may probably be surprised: how did they miss this fact!
No wonder! The opening of the monument in the Vilnius gallery “Mažoji galerija” was not reported in the news of the main television channels of Lithuania, the leading Lithuanian newspapers did not utter a word.
Most likely, they were embarrassed that the monument to the great Spaniard was made ... of plywood. Thick, three-centimeter, but still plywood.

But when you find out that the author of this unusual composition is the Vilnius artist and sculptor Sergey Evtuhov, who opened to us, as Obzor recently wrote, absolutely incredible pages from the life of Alexander Sergeyevich Pushkin, possible questions disappear immediately. "

Cervantes. First trip to the city


At the ceremony of presentation of the monument to M.Servantes S.Evtuhov mentioned two important points that greatly help to understand his work.
Sergey admitted that his favorite writers are Miguel Cervantes and Daniil Harms, and that the “parent” Don Quixote could not help but invest in the character of the hidalgo, in his attitude to the world, a considerable part of himself.
Perhaps the same can be said about the works of Sergey Evtuhov himself.
Here, say, an unusual solution to the monument to Cervantes: a flying horse and his horseman, standing firmly on the ground.
An impulse, a departure from everything ordinary and imposed, earthly? But the composition at the same time stands firmly on the ground with the feet of the same rider.

So S. Evtuhov, as if hovering above the earth on a horse of absurdity, is at the same time firmly standing on the ground. He simply suggests that we, following Harms’s example, not obey the stereotypes humbly imposed on us and invented by someone the rules of proper behavior, but create our own Universe, always be a creator, like an unbending Cervantes.
By the way, in the composition there is another curious symbol - the disproportionately small sword. S. Evtukhov explained its meaning, but each of us can have its own explanation. Why shouldn't we become creators, following the advice of the author of the first monument in Lithuania M. Servantes?


Cervantes at Vilnius Gallery «Mažoji galerija»(1)


Cervantes at Vilnius Gallery «Mažoji galerija»(2)


During the presentation of the plywood Cervantes, the author of the monument told the audience that books with the adventures of a cunning hidalgo, it turns out, are second only to the Bible in circulation. This alone makes us wonder: is it worth to consider Don Quixote simply, as they say now, a "fun"? However, we hope that only a small number of people who read the novel treat this way today. And those who have not yet met hidalgo and his faithful Sancho Pansa should obviously think about a more productive use of their free time.

The first (and only) sketch


... and the original


Separately, it is worth emphasizing that in his opening remarks Sergey tried to name all those who helped him in realizing his next “Harms” idea. By the way, you should not, having trusted, as it were, the absolutely simple appearance of the composition, conclude that all the difficulty and time involved in the implementation of this project consisted exclusively in sawing out the “monument” with a jig saw.
Initially, an idea was born, and it was back in 2015. And for four years it crystallized in the author’s head. And then, after consulting with an expert in the field of woodworking, a “monument” began to be born. Or - a monument, without any quotation marks".

                                                                     Alexander SHAHOV ,
"Obzor"

Master Eugenius Kubilius and Nodarius Turchinavicius (owner of the van) on the background of the van on which the Cervantes set off on his first journey

Victor Drozdov, chief pilot, head of the flight school, actively sympathizing with my work and offering to deliver Cervantes to Mažoji galerija by helicopter

Volanda, mistress of “Mažoji galerija”, where the first monument to M. Cervantes in Lithuania first appeared in public

The first tourists from Israel to "Mažoji galerija" at the first monument to Cervantes (Miguel)


Links to articles in the Obzor newspaper
https://www.obzor.lt/news/n53672.html
https://www.obzor.lt/news/n53861.html

Sergey Evtuhov, author of the project "Yellow Road".
evtuhov@yahoo.com
Joan & Teresa

This team - Joan and Teresa

Joan and Teresa are the soul of Carol Valles. They started the adventure. They forced her to be born with effort and sacrifice, and years later they reaped their rewards. Joan Carol, leading her and Theresa Valles, is always by her side.
Joan, after a long tradition of making cava for the family, decided to start her marketing in 1996. Always with the same philosophy: a long time aging cava and following the traditional method. He was the one who led the winery for the past 21 years. Who endowed her with a unique personality that characterizes Carol Valles: respect for nature, patience in development and respect for the territory.
Teresa, a school teacher, was always with Joan. Do what was necessary. Fitting, going to fairs, cleaning bottles until late at night, developing labels or accepting orders in private homes and commercial premises.
This team - Joan and Teresa - created what is now called Carol Valles.
Theresa Valles and Joan Carol , is always by her side.
Joan and Teresa are the soul of Carol Valles. They started the adventure. They forced her to be born with effort and sacrifice, and years later they reaped their rewards. Joan Carol, leading her and Theresa Valles, is always by her side.
Joan, after a long tradition of making cava for the family, decided to start her marketing in 1996. Always with the same philosophy: a long time aging cava and following the traditional method. He was the one who led the winery for the past 21 years. Who endowed her with a unique personality that characterizes Carol Valles: respect for nature, patience in development and respect for the territory.
Teresa, a school teacher, was always with Joan. Do what was necessary. Fitting, going to fairs, cleaning bottles until late at night, developing labels or accepting orders in private homes and commercial premises.
This team - Joan and Teresa - created what is now called Carol Valles.
Theresa Valles and Joan Carol , is always by her side.

Bodega Cellers Carol Walles


In the history of the Yellow Road, this is not the first time a special guest has appeared. So one guest was from Sicily, a producer of unique olive oil. One guest from Tuscany: olive oil and a school of culinary excellence. The producer of red wine from Gorgana (Italy), who would like to produce white, but the grapes are not the same. But our guest today has white wine. And this wine even has yellow-green notes. But all the wines at the Cellers Carol Walles winery are sparkling. Therefore, to begin with, we decided to arrange a meeting with this Spanish winery under the heading: Special guests.


Why do you produce only sparkling wines?
(the representative of the winery "Cellers Carol Walles" Nil Surià answers my question)

We are a very small cellar focused on the production of very long aged high quality cavas. The fact that we focus on this very specific type of wines has one main reason: our wine region has a very old tradition of producing cava. This type of sparkling was very typically produced by farmers for their own consumption with the vines owned by the family. With time, this very artisanal wines ended up being commercialized. In our cellars, we try to keep this artisanal origins, keeping many manual processes. The aim to produce high quality artisanal cavas make it necessary to focus on a very specific product.
Pit-Roig

Still life with Pit-Roig


Guillem Carol Gran Reserva Extra Brut


Still life with Guillem Carol Gran Reserva Extra Brut


Gran Reserva Familiar Millenium 2011


It is impossible to list here all the activities that the life of the winery is rich in:

Joan Carol will cook there in the courtyard of the winery, an assortment of seasonal mushrooms. After visiting the vineyards, the cellar, you can prepare an appetizer paired with three of the collection caves: Pit Roig, Pink Brut, Nature Reserve 2017, Pica Socks brut nature Gran Reserva 2015 and Gran Reserva Familiar Millenium 2019.

Joan Carol will cook there


an assortment of seasonal mushrooms


Between breakfast and lunch: brunch. And with KM0 products! The perfect combination in a privileged environment: vineyards. At Carol Vallès you will be offered the opportunity to enjoy a fantastic breakfast between the vineyards, combined with a guided tour of the cellar and its vineyards, where you can see every detail of the artisan cellar production process. The visit begins at the place where the long path of cava begins, with a guided tour of the ecological vineyards with late traditional cold meats among the vineyards. This activity will allow you to plunge into the history of Cava and the culture of its preparation, as well as enjoy breakfast with local products next to the impressive cellar vineyards.
Between breakfast and lunch: brunch


with a guided tour of the ecological vineyards


This activity will allow you to plunge into the history of Cava


If you like sweets and cava, you will not want to miss this. During this tasting, you will be offered to try the most unique caves paired with various sweets.

At this tasting, you will combine different hams with the most exclusive Carol Vallès caverns. You will discover the taste of acorn ham during a fun tasting and learn interesting facts about this world famous traditional meat.

And evenings of live music in the courtyard of the winery...
An evening of live music...

and Fantastic Land


I thank
Nil Surià, spokesman for Bodega Cellers Carol Walles, for helping prepare this publication.
and site - https://workas.org/ - partner of this publication on the "Yellow Road"

Sergey Evtuhov, author of the project "Yellow Road".
evtuhov@yahoo.com
Sara and her parentss and brother at the winery


"Our forefathers were passionate farmers. The land was their life. They knew every inch of it, and they respected it and worked it with love. They are the inspiration for this family project. This ancestral journey led us to create a small family cellar in 2006 called Mas Blanch i Jové in La Pobla de Cérvoles (Lleida), where we produce wines that inspire in the DO Costers del Segre, a region of Les Garrigues.
We harvest our 17ha of vineyards by hand, in small crates of 20Kg, when the grape is at its optimum ripening point. All the plantations are in the 700m-high La Pobla de Cérvoles, in the Costers del Segre DO, an area of Les Garrigues. We obtain about 3,500Kg/ha of high-quality grapes, which allows us to produce high altitude ecological wines with character and elegance.
The main range of wines are called Saó, a word that speaks of the land and means “maturity, perfection and the optimum degree of moisture.” And we look for this genuineness in each of our bottles, our wine expressing the best of the place that saw its birth.
We also have a range of new discoveries: bold and special wines, made with spontaneous fermentation, that have a captivating rusticity.
Very fresh and alive"

(information from the company website)

Mas Blanch I Jove



La Pobla de Cervoles


Yellow Road Questions answered by Sara Jové, MAS BLANCH I JOVÉ

1 - Why is your vineyard called "Mas Blanch i Jové"?
The winery is called Mas Blanch i Jové because Mas Blanch is the name of the highest vineyard we have and also is my mother's second last name and Jové is my father's first last name.

2 - Please tell us a little about yourself
My name is Sara Jové. I'm a wine producer. And I think we have a responsabilty with this planet that's why we only produce organic products and we are fully powered by solar energy. My grandparents were farmers who taught us to love nature. I enclose a picture with my parents & brother at the winery.

3 - I really liked your idea: Picnic on the Vineyard ... And what does it really look like?
I don't have any picture of it yet but I enclose a picture of people having a typical breakfast at the winery with bread, tomatoes, typical pork sausages & cheeses.

Breakfast at Mas Blanch i Jové Winery


4 - You have olive oil. Let's start with it ...
How many olive trees do you have? What does a bottle, a label look like?

We have 5700 olive trees. We are partners with a olive mill in the area: Molí del Set (www.molidelset.com). I enclose a couple of pictures.

Olive grove...


olive oil...


olive oil (Verd)

5 - How to get to your vineyards (from Tarragona, Barcelona)? Can you suggest a route to visit your winery? Is there public transport there?
We are situated in a little village (La Pobla de Cérvoles) in Lleida. There is not good public transportation to arrive to the winery but It's easy to arrive by car from Lleida (45'), Tarragona (1h) or Barcelona (1h30'). In the region there are plenty of activities to do (history, nature, gastronomy). You only have to pick!
Lleida,


6 - What is your favorite wine (red or white)? And why?
I really love Saó Expressiu. It's our most personal red wine. Basically made from Grenache (65%), Cabernet Sauvingon (25%) & Tempranillo (10%) from old vineyards situated in the mountains (all our vineyards are more than 700m above the sea level). It's elegant with a velvety tannin.
Saó Expressiu


7 - Please tell us about your project "The Artists’ Vineyard"
The Artists’ Vineyard is an idea by Guinovart.

Which became a reality thanks to a family who dares to dream and place a bet on Les Garrigues as a picturesque and privileged setting for a unique project: an open-air museum.

The Artists’ Vineyard merges art and wine in an exhibition hall open to the public. Here you can find sculptures and large-scale installations conceived by artists such as Carles Santos, Guinovart, Joan Brossa, Susana Solano, Evru (Zush) and Frederic Amat. The Mas Blanch i Jové winery is the culminating point of an artistic journey, offering a unique experience for all visitors.

Since its inauguration in 2009, many creators have crossed paths at The Artists’ Vineyard, an outdoor art gallery. It is a perfect setting for poetry recitals, outdoor paintings, magic, clowns, opera, music of all kinds, dance, giant puppets, soap bubbles, theatre… It is our way of connecting wine and art and to leave a subtle footprint on the soil, one that tells of artistic heritage and the transformational capacity of art.

GUINOVART, Catalan painter of international recognition, was an art and wine lover. Guinovart knew how to enjoy the small pleasures in life. He was a person of special sensitivity, connected with nature, with the earth. Whatever the theme was that inspired him at a particular moment, he always captured its essence and knew how to express it powerfully. We fell in love – with his work and his simplicity – it was impossible not to. And he fell in love with our enthusiasm and our Saó. And we were honoured with his help in designing the winery and creating the impressive mural tribute to the world of wine “In Vino Veritas”, presiding over our tasting room. The mural, 10.5 meters long, was his last great work.

8 - List, if possible, a set (gift box) of three or four of your own wines (red and white), which, in your opinion, that can decorate the "poster" of your farm
Ok, I enclose some pictures of the sets.
Wine set from Mas Blanch I Jove winery (1)


Wine set from Mas Blanch I Jove (2)


Wine set (3)


9 - You can offer the most beautiful view (favorite point) of the vineyards or the surrounding landscape. May I ask you to take one or two photos of your favorite places?
I enclose some pictures of the Artists' Vineyard & surrondings.

A (rtist)?


Framing the Dream Dialog (Emmarcant el Somni Dialeg)

Vineyard

10 - What is your choice for "Yellow Road"?
I've chosen a picture of Troballa Blanca. A wine 100% white grenache, maceration pre-fermentation with the peels, spontaneous fermentation, aging in concrete eggs. It's very unique, intense & interesting wines.

Troballa blanca

11 - What white wine producer (from Spain or another country) would you recommend for Yellow Road?
I'ld recommend the winery Xavier Clua, they make excellent white grenaches in Terra Alta. I also love the white wine Les Brugueres from La Conreria d'Scala Dei in Priorat. And the wines of Marco Abella, also in Priorat.

12 - You have already completed the wonderful project The Artists ’Vineyard, an idea by the painter Josep Guinovart. Do you have plans to continue this project? Are you open to new offers?
The Artist' Project is still alive but I don't know how it will evolve the next years. We're very open to new offers & ideas,



Sergey Evtuhov, author of the project "Yellow Road".
evtuhov@yahoo.com



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