F&W’s Ray Isle tells how a bottle of Napa Cabernet changed his life more than 20 years ago, and how a journey to the source helped him understand the ways he and that wine have changed since then.
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Wine to try: 2006 Movia Veliko Bianco ($40).
In Lebanon’s Bekaa Valley, the Hochar family has been making spectacular wine for more than 80 years—through civil wars, gunpoint searches, mortar fire and other extreme obstacles. The family’s bravery and persistence has been extraordinary, as is its hospitality toward wine-loving visitors.
Wine to try: 2003 Chateau Musar ($45).
Anyone who loves the idea of a winery that also produces great honey, cheese, olive oil and eggs—a self-contained food ecosystem—should visit Sicily’s Tasca d’Almerita and take a class with co-owner Fabrizia Lanza at the estate’s cooking school.
Wine to try: 2006 Tasca d’Almerita Tenuta Regaleali Rosso del Conte ($70).
Château Cos d’Estournel
Louis d’Estournel, who made a fortune in Asia in the early 1800s, built Cos d’Estournel to recall his adventuring days. The sandstone château has pagoda-like turrets and wooden doors from Zanzibar; it is also home to one of Bordeaux’s greatest Cabernet-based reds.
Wine to try: 2008 Château Cos d’Estournel ($180).
California Wine Advice