Latroun Monastery wine | Fontaney Blanc

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Dry white wine Fontaney - from Latroun Monastery. 750 ml. Blanc, Sec.

The Latroun Monastery, also known as the monastery of the silent monks, is located on the highway that leads to Jerusalem, in the foothills adjacent to the Latroun Junction.

The monks are Trappists, part of the catholic Church's Benedictine order which was established in Italy in the 6th century. The Trappist charter promotes earning a livelihood by using one's skills, thereby being economically independent and not relying on external sources of support (according to Psalm 128:2 - "When thou eatest the labour of thy lands, happy shalt thou be, and it shall be well with thee"). In 1890 a group of monks arrived in Israel from France, founded the monastery in Latroun and started producing wine as a source of income. There are numerous vineyards in the monastery grounds, and the winery, carved in the rock face, produces wine in the French tradition.

The monks also produce olive oil from their olive orchards.

Prior to the Six Day War (1967), Latroun was the only winery in the Jordanian kingdom. The wine was sold in local markets and exported to other Middle Eastern Countries. Today the winery produces around 300,000 bottles annually

The winery itself is a maze of chambers, halls, cloisters and tunnels that are closed to the public. An underground tunnel connects the monastery to the winery, allowing the monks easy access to the winery regardless of weather conditions. Even on the hottest days, the temperature remains a pleasant 18c – 20c. In the past there were huge concrete containers here but today the winery has several stainless steel fermentation tanks. The long corridors between the dark cooling chambers are currently lined with hundreds of oak barrels in several tiers that contain aging wine.

The monastery has around 400 dunam of vineyards with over 20 vine varieties. These include Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot from the Bordeaux region, Pinot Noir and Blanc from Burgundy, Chardonnay and Gewürztraminer from Alsace, Sauvignon Blanc, Riesling Grenache, Muscat and Alicante. The vineyards are planted in the grounds surrounding the monastery-heavier on its north side and lighter, lime soil on its southern side. All grapes are harvested manually.

The simple Alicante variety is used as a basis for numerous wines. The monastery’s Pinot Noir, reminiscent of Burgundy Pinot Noir, has been cultivated and produced for over 40 years. The Gewürztraminer’s is reminiscent of Alsace wines and recently the winery received Tokai vines, used to produce a marvelous Hungarian dessert wine

There are two theories regarding the origin of the name. One is that it is a corruption of the French- Le toron des chevaliers (The Castle of the Knights) named by the Crusaders. The other is that it is from the Latin, Domus boni Latronis (The House of the Good Thief) a name given by 14th century Christian pilgrims after the penitent thief who was crucified by the Romans alongside Jesus (Luke 23:40–43)

750 ml ( 26.5 cm, 10.5 inches, glass bottle)