Wine and Spirits Successful Venture

Daniel Rogov
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Daniel Rogov

The joint venture of the Golan Heights Winery and the state-of-the-art and ecofriendly winery of kibbutz Yiron in Upper Galilee celebrated its 10th anniversary in 2010. Its vineyards includes some of the best in Upper Galilee - Yiron, Meron, Misgav Am, Yiftach and Malkiya.

Senior winemaker Micha Vaadia and Boaz Mizrachi Adam produce distinctly terroir-based wines in two series. The first labels are Yiron, a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot, and Meron, a unique blend of Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon and Petit Verdot. The regular label, Galil Mountain, contains varietal releases and blends of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Pinot Noir, Syrah, Sangiovese, Chardonnay, Viognier and Sauvignon Blanc. They produce interesting, quality wines that are good value for the money.

Galil Mountain, Yiron, 2007: Well-balanced, firmly structured, full-bodied. 62% Cabernet Sauvignon, 31% Merlot and 7% Syrah. Lives up to its promise. On the nose and palate blueberries, blackberries and stony minerals, yielding to blackcurrants and purple plums, all sitting comfortably on a background that hints of saddle leather and dark chocolate. Long and elegant. Enjoyable now but best 2012-2017. NIS 106. Score 92. K

Galil Mountain, Meron, 2007: Earlier tasting note holds firm. Oak-aged for 16 months, an intensely dark garnet blend. Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon and Petit Verdot (81%, 10% and 9% respectively ). Full-bodied and concentrated, with a generous 15% alcohol content but simultaneously soft and round. Gentle notes of spicy cedarwood open to generous cassis, blackberries and red plums, supported nicely by notes of grilled herbs and earthy minerals. Long and mouth-filling. Drink now-2016. NIS 100. Score 91. K

Galil Mountain, Avivim, 2008: Oak-aged on its lees for nine months, a blend of 75% Chardonnay and 25% Viognier, deep fruit and light herbs on the deeply aromatic nose, medium- to full-bodied with fine concentration and acidity to keep it lively. Aromas and flavors of pears, honeydew melon and citrus, coming together as a long, coherent and charming whole. Drink now. NIS 77. Score 90. K

Galil Mountain, Shiraz-Cabernet Sauvignon, 2008: Medium- to full-bodied, softly tannic blend, 50% each Shiraz and Cabernet Sauvignon. On the nose and palate cherries, raspberries, a gentle hint of dusty oak and an appealing hint of white pepper rising on the finish. Drink now-2013. NIS 62. Score 88. K

Galil Mountain, Barbera, 2007: Reflecting nine months in French oak with notes of smoky oak, medium-dark garnet, opening with a quiet nose but going on to reveal a generous array of berries, black cherries, purple plums and spring flowers. Tannins and oak rise along with a hint of bitter almonds on the finish. Give this one a bit of time for its elements to come together. Drink now or in the next year or so. NIS 62. Score 89. K

Galil Mountain, Pinot Noir, 2008: Developed in year-old French barriques. Deep ruby toward garnet, medium- to full-bodied; soft tannins integrated nicely. On the opening black cherries, then red and black berries, cassis and spices, on a gentle background of spicy wood and stony minerals. Complex, generous and long. Drink now-2014. NIS 68. Score 90. K

Galil Mountain, Shiraz, 2009: Dark ruby to garnet, perhaps medium- to full-bodied, with just firm enough tannins gripping gently. Purple plums, blackberries and black cherries on a background hinting at one moment of saddle leather and the next of licorice and roasted herbs. Drink now-2014. NIS 48. Score 89. K (Retasted February 24, 2011 )

Galil Mountain, Cabernet Sauvignon, 2009: Even better than a pre-release tasting. Unoaked, medium dark garnet with purple and orange reflections, medium-bodied, gently caressing tannins. On the nose and palate blackcurrants, blackberries and blueberries and lurking comfortably notes of green olives and freshly hung tobacco. Drink now-2013. NIS 48. Score 88. K

Galil Mountain, Merlot, 2009: Garnet to royal purple, unoaked, medium- to full-bodied, soft, caressing tannins. Currant, wild berry and purple plums on a lightly spicy background. Not complex but very pleasant drinking, best with small cuts of beef or veal. Drink now-2013. NIS 48. Score 86. K

Galil Mountain, Rose, 2009: Light- to medium-bodied, rose petal to light strawberry pink in color. Strawberry, raspberry and even a note of blueberries, with fine balancing acidity. Crisp and refreshing, a fun wine. Drink now. NIS 39. Score 88. K

Galil Mountain, Chardonnay, 2009: Light, lively, medium-bodied, plus a tantalizing hint of spicy oak. Opens in the glass to show summer fruits, citrus and citrus peel, a background of flinty minerals. Drink now. NIS 42. Score 88. K

Galil Mountain, Viognier, 2009: The color of damp golden straw, medium-bodied, with bare hints of spicy and toasty oak. Citrus, white peaches and mineral notes, yielding from mid-palate on to notes of ripe cantaloupe. Fragrant and moderately long. Drink now. NIS 42. Score 88. K

Galil Mountain, Sauvignon Blanc, 2009: Unoaked as is the rule for this wine, light golden straw in color, fresh and aromatic - citrus, melon and a hint of fresh lawn after a spring shower. Lively and refreshing, just enough complexity to grab attention. Drink now. NIS 42. Score 89. K



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