Wines | Massaya

Every harvest is a blank page that the winemaker has to fill. Each year there is a new challenge to improve on past performance and past experience.

As each harvest approaches, it is good for the winemaker to take a little time for meditation before the days of physical endeavour that will follow.

This usually happens in a number of ways; while strolling through the vineyards, reading inspiring texts, visiting respected craftsmen or simply admiring the beauty of nature.

This year our winemaker has drawn on contemporary and past authors of Lebanese origin for inspiration.


These examples from Kahlil Gibran put it beautifully:

And in the autumn, when you gather the grapes of your vineyards for the winepress, say in your heart,
“I too am a vineyard and my fruit shall be gathered for the winepress,
And like new wine I shall be kept in eternal vessels.”
And in winter, when you draw the wine,
let there be in you heart a song for each cup;
And let there be in the song a remembrance for the autumn days, and for the vineyards and for the winepress.


And to remind us of the fine line between extreme feelings and emotions, no one can express it better than Gibran again:

Is not the cup that holds your wine the very cup that was burned
in the potter’s oven?


Here’s another story from Gibran, brimming with the metaphors of wine:

Once there lived a rich man who was justly proud of his cellar and the wine therein. And there was one jug of ancient vintage kept for some occasion known only to himself.

The governor of the state visited him, and he bethought him and said: “That jug shall not be opened for a mere governor.”

And a bishop of the diocese visited him, but he said to himself: “Nay, I will not open that jug. He would not know its value, nor would its aroma reach his nostrils.”

The prince of the realm came and supped with him. But he thought, “It is too royal a wine for a mere princeling.”

And even on the day when his own nephew was married, he said to himself: ”No, not to these guests shall that jug be brought forth.”

And the years passed by and he died an old man, and he was buried like unto every seed and acorn.

And upon the day that he was buried the ancient jug was brought out together with other jugs of wine, and it was shared by the peasants of the neighbourhood. And none knew its great age.

To them, all that is poured into a cup is only wine.


Considering that harvest times are always periods that are accompanied by doubt and uncertainty, we would do well to remember this iconic quotation from Gibran:

Pity the nation that wears a cloth it does not weave and eats bread it does not harvest.

As we bear in mind the advice of poets and writers, we at Massaya nevertheless look forward with humility to this year’s harvest and the wines that will flow from it.

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