I was getting a chance to taste a couple more wines from Ixsir Winery. I was still feeling rather sheepish for getting my dates mixed up for the tasting and I was a week late at The Fine Wine Source in Livonia. They must have thought that I was senile or just crazy and I had missed the chance to talk with their representative. The wine shop was very generous though to let me try some of the wine that was left over from the actual tasting, and since they use the Coravin system, I can say whole-heartedly that the wines that they poured were still fresh and didn’t show any signs of being over the hill after being in the chiller for a week.
I can understand that they were out of the red wines for a tasting, and I would not expect them to open fresh bottles for me to try, since I was so late. Ixsir Winery offers three collections of wines; Altitudes, Grande Reserve and EL. The Altitude collections I did not try and there was a red, a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, Caladoc and Tempranillo, a rosé which was a blend of Syrah, Caladoc and Cinsault and a white which was a blend of Obeidy, Muscat and Viognier. While I had a chance to try the Grande Reserve White, I missed out on the Grande Reserve Red which was a blend of Syrah and Cabernet Sauvignon.
The EL collection is their supreme cuvee at Ixsir Winery and it best exemplifies the terroir of the estate in the Batroun. It is a labor of love by the winemaker Gabriel Rivero and his close advisor Hubert de Bouard a co-owner of Chateau Angelus in Saint Emilion. If you were aware of it, France and Lebanon had a long history in the Twentieth Century and Beirut was called the Paris of the Middle East. The EL Red was a blend of Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. Which leads us to the two wines that I had a chance to try. The EL White was at blend of seventy percent Viognier and thirty percent Chardonnay. The wine is aged for twelve months in French Oak, of which a third was new, a third was used once and a third was used twice. I tried both the EL White 2012 and the EL White 2014. It was really interesting to see, because I normally if I had a chance to buy the wine untasted I would have chosen the later vintage, because of my wariness of buying older white wines. The 2012 vintage was pure bliss and a real eye opener to me, as the two wines were blended so well and mellowed that I would not have thought that it was such a large degree of Viognier. I could have easily drunk a bottle of it with a dinner and be totally happy with its smoothness. Going by the quality of the three white wines, I am sure that the red wines would be equally wonderful in the glass.