Serge Hochar – Lebanon (Chateau Musar)

May 8, 2018

Name: Serge Hochar

Country: Lebanon

Serge Hochar (✝)

Currently: Oenologist of Chateau Musar




Please, tell us about how you got into wine, the wine industry and how your career developed?

My father Gaston Hochar started the winery in 1930 in Ghazir, Lebanon. As he wanted me to join the family business, I started working in 1959. This is why my first vintage is 1959 red and white. While I was making wine, I was studying engineering and afterwards, I went to Bordeaux to study oenology with Jean Ribereau Gayon and Emile Peynaud. In 2013, I have made my 55th harvest.

What is your philosophy to making wine and viticulture?

I entered the winery with a no touch philosophy. So no additives, no make up, no chemistry, and even no sulphur. This approach is based on the fact that I respect nature and its ability to manage itself. If you understand nature, nature will understand you. I am not an expert in viticulture but organic viticulture has been one side of my philosophy on the world of wine.

Which cultivar is your favourite to work with and why?

For eighteen years, I have been working on many different varieties. I ended up using for my Chateau Musar Red Cinsault, Carignan and Cabernet Sauvignon in almost the same proportion. For the Chateau Musar white, I am using two grape varieties indigenous to Lebanon, Merwah and Obeideh which are on original rootstock and not grafted. They are the oldest grapes on earth and are the origin of Vitis Vinifera. All the grapes I mentioned express themselves in an impressive way in Lebanon. There maybe others but those are the ones I have been working on successfully.

How do you see the future of wine production and what are the challenges and the opportunities?

Future of wine production is very challenging because nature is faced with a major problem which is global warming and things are changing each day more. For me, I see it as a major problem concerning wine production from specific varieties and different locations. However opportunities are immense.

Where do you see the global wine market in 2025?

The wine market is today getting more and more globalized as wine is becoming an universal drink, new world countries as well as old world countries will increase the consumption of wine accepting France, Italy and Spain. So wine production and wine consumption is on an uptrend for the next 10 years as wine is the biggest medicine on earth.

Serge Hochar


@ by Dominik Kozlik – Zeitgeist Sommeliers – International Sommelier Positions –

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