- Tamlyn Currin, jancisrobinson.com
Like Cinsault, Carignan has been planted in the Bekaa Valley for two centuries and also saw its reputation decline throughout the 20th century in favor of Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah. While not quite as prevalent as Cinsault and more likely to have been replanted with other varieties in the Bekaa Valley, Faouzi Issa has been searching for and acquiring as much old-vine Carignan as he can find believing, quite rightly, that like Cinsault it is best adapted the growing conditions of Bekaa. While we are fans of Cinsault, our work in the Priorat has made Carignan/Cariñena/Carinyena/Mazuelo specialists so when we tasted Faouzi’s old vine Carignan we knew that it was the perfect fit for our portfolio. All the same, practices that make his Cinsault so nakedly appealing are employed here – hand harvesting, strict selection, and natural yeast fermentation in the estate’s ancient concrete tanks.