It comes as no surprise that the temple of Bacchus (god of agriculture and wine) in Baalbek is the best preserved and largest Roman temple of its size anywhere in the world. It is more colossal than the Parthenon. However, the ancient ruins and other important sites of this small beautiful country will be covered in another post. The reason I always wanted to visit Lebanon was because I loved their food and heard about their wine!
While their countryside is mountainous up to the alluring coast on the Mediterranean, they manage to produce great vegetables, grains and grapes. They prepare delicious food with names I can’t pronounce or remember when called upon to order. Think tabbouleh, hummus, baba ghanoush, kebbeh and sambusac…..similar to tapas but fresh, tasty and different from my normal diet and probably much healthier.
The production of wine dates back about 5000 years but Château Ksara in the Beqaa Valley was founded in 1857 by Jesuit Priests to continue the great tradition. Legend has it that a fox that was killing chickens was chased by the priests into an ancient underground cave with about 2 kilometers of tunnels that had been historically used by families hiding from the Ottomans and for storage throughout centuries. It serves as the wine cellar today.