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January 22, 2017 / 24 Tevet, 5777

Posts Tagged ‘Golan Heights Winery’

Four Cups for the Four Types of Sons

Wednesday, April 2nd, 2014

Every year families all over the world unite to enjoy the seder. While calling all members of the family together may feel like the ingathering of the exiles, it is the laughter and discussion held around the table that all will remember for years to come.

Many households are made up of a range of personalities reminiscent of the four sons we discuss during the seder, whose placation may at times feel like a balancing act. This Passover, the Golan Heights Winery presents fun recommendations for wines to fit each type, so that the differing personalities do not create a havoc worse than the ten plagues.

Gilgal Brut

Gilgal Brut

Type 1- The Firecracker-the Evil Son This boisterous personality is not always the “evil son”, rather the family member who enjoys being the antagonist, often leaving us in fits of laughter. The rebel rouser has a tendency of taking things too far, and often can turn an evening into the unexpected. Appease this “evil” one with a glass of an excellent sparkling wine such as the Gilgal Brut a method champagne, the perfect match for such a bubbly personality. The Gilgal Brut raises spirits and offers the perfect opportunity to make a toast to the evening’s celebrations. The wine opens with a pop and will begin the seder with an energetic fizz, fitting to placate this guests’ malevolent (albeit loveable) demeanor.

Yarden 2T

Yarden 2T

Type 2- The Favorite- the Wise Son The “wise son” may at times be too smart for his own good and it is usually a treat for the rest of the family to find those rare moments he gets surprised or stumped. While sometimes the favorite and other times the antagonist himself, the fellow siblings especially relish putting this son in his place. Test this know-it-all’s wine knowledge with the Yarden 2T, a Portuguese style dry red wine made up of two less familiar varieties, the Touriga Nacional and the Tinta Cao, exhibiting a rich, fruity and complex body. The Yarden 2T will reward all guests both as a perfect accompaniment to the meaty dishes of the seder and with precious few moments of silence as this “wise son” tries to ascertain the appropriate varieties within.


Galil Mountain Meron

Galil Mountain Meron

Type 3- The Quiet One – the Simple Son We all know this personality, who seems to repeat his contributions year to year (is this night really different than all other nights?) Though his observations may seem, well, obvious, we can try and add some points to this son’s IQ by giving him a wine that is anything but simple: the Galil Mountain Meron. The Meron evolves during the meal as new flavors are expressed with every sip and is the ideal engagement to begin wine discussion. This strong and well-balanced wine exhibits a silky texture and a long velvety finish which fills the palate with its rich tastes and is the perfect companion to the seder plate’s lamb. Not only will the this wine greatly aid the “simple” son’s wisdom, after a cup or two of the Meron, you may find the brilliance of all the guests gathered round the table enhanced.

Yarden Heightswine

Yarden Heightswine

Type 4-the Youngsters- the Ones Who Do Not Know How to Ask While this guest may usually give a “deer in the headlights” look when asked a question, the seder is ultimately about engaging all of our company, thus securing the links in our tradition. Studies have shown that the glazed over look can be recharged with a good glass of fine, sweet wine. For “the one who does not know how to ask”, choose the Yarden Heightswine. This award winning wine is truly a dessert wine with a difference, compelling your guests to ask “why can’t all other wines be like this one?” The Yarden Heightswine is a delightful and rich vino comprised of an aromatic mix of tropical fruit flavors layered with honeysuckle, jasmine and a hint of spice, truly described as the ‘taste of Gan Eden’. Keep the all your guests awake and alert by the end of the seder without engaging in the search for the afikomen but simply by filling their glasses with this delectable choice.

Rachel Stern Siegman

Golan Heights Wind Farm

Monday, November 12th, 2012

The Golan Heights Wind Farm is located 3,150 ft. above sea level on Mount Bnei Rasan, three miles south of Quneitra in the Golan Heights.

In other words, just a stone’s throw away from the bloodiest civil war raging in the region.

It was the first wind farm ever built in Israel, back in 1992. It perates 10 Floda 600 wind turbines generating 6 MW for the Mey Eden mineral water bottling plant, the Golan Heights Winery and 20,000 local residents, give or take. The surplus is fed into the electrical grid.

Several more wind farms are planned in the Galilee, the Negev, and the Aravah regions.

Walking to shul on the shore of the Mediterranean in Netanya, holding on to my yarmulka against the crazy gale, I wonder why they haven’t filled up the horizon with off-shore wind turbines. Altogether, it’s nuts that a country with this much sun and this much wind has to keep looking for oil and natural gas in the ground.

You know why the off shore rigs Israeli companies keep building are yet to yield a drop? Because the midrash says there was no deluge in Eretz Israel. No deluge – no oil or natural gas. It’s scientific…

But, like I said, we’re blessed with so much wind and sun, we should be able to make with it more than just hot air…

Yori Yanover

Israeli White Wines For The Summer

Wednesday, June 29th, 2011

If you’re located in the Northern Hemisphere, July signals the time of year when the weather can be hot enough to make you both thirsty and a bit more than uncomfortable. Our minds go to the efficiency of the air-conditioning in our homes, automobiles, and offices, and our palates take us to dishes that are light and not infrequently intentionally served cold. When we think of wine it is most logical for our thoughts to turn to white wines for, in addition to being served well chilled, those indeed tend to be crisper and more refreshing than reds.

Even as a youth I knew that dry white wines are not white at all. Made from grapes whose skin is gold, green or yellowish, their color can range from pale straw-like to yellow or golden. I also learned at an early age that although most white wines are made for consumption in their youth, the very best of them can be cellared for 20, 30 or even more years.

Several years ago, together with our Israeli cousins, many Americans came to the conclusion that drinking white wines was not as sophisticated as drinking reds. Some went as far as to give away all of their whites. That, frankly, was a badly informed decision, for as true wine lovers know, the very best white wines can be no less complex, deep or long-lived as even the best of reds. Whether made from Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Viognier, Riesling, Gewurztraminer, Pinot Gris, Chenin Blanc or Viognier, white wines tend to be more refreshing than reds because in addition to lacking the tannins of reds they are at their best when served well chilled. Simply stated, because we tend to eat dishes that are lighter in the summer, white wines go down more easily than reds.

As to what foods match well with white wines, I have only one rule: lighter dishes should be accompanied by lighter wines (e.g. Pinot Gris, Sauvignon Blanc, Chablis, and unoaked Chardonnay), while medium or heavier dishes should be matched with medium- to full-bodied whites (e.g. oaked Chardonnay or Sauvignon Blanc, Viognier, Roussanne, Marsanne, and Semillon).

Following are reviews of a collection of kosher Israeli white wines that are particularly well suited to the months of summer:

Golan Heights Winery, Yarden, Chardonnay, Odem Organic Vineyard, 2008: Bright burnished gold in color, full-bodied, opening with a note of butterscotch on the nose. On first attack summer fruits and pears, those yielding to notes of citrus and crème brûlée. Gentle wood and a near-buttery texture balanced finely with acidity. Not a lively wine but indeed destined to be complex, mouth-filling and, for lack of a better term, delicious. Drink now-2018. $14. Score: 94.

Castel, “C,” Chardonnay, Blanc du Castel, 2008: Light, bright gold in color, full-bodied but with balance so finely tuned that the wine seems to float on the palate. On first attack, grapefruit and grapefruit pith on a seductive creamy and vanilla nose, the wine then opening in the glass to reveal pear, apricot, fig and melon aromas and flavors, all on a mineral-rich background. Long, deep, complex, and elegant. Drink now-2014. $42. Score: 93.

Golan Heights Winery, Katzrin, Chardonnay, 2008: Lighter gold and, although full-bodied, neither as dense or as oaky as with past releases. All of which is just fine, for after distinct notes of butterscotch and poached pears the wine opens to reveal citrus, melon and light toasty notes that prove subtle, complex, elegant and long. Drink now-2018. $22. Score: 92.

Yatir, Viognier, 2010: Unoaked, thus maintaining its fresh fruit character and crisp nature. Light- to medium-bodied, opening with floral and nutty aromas and flavors, going on to show a generous mouthful of pear, apricot and litchi fruits, all on a background that hints of spices and, on the finish, a note of litchi. Round, lively and generous. Drink now-2014. $32. Score: 91.

Yatir, Sauvignon Blanc, 2010: Fermented in stainless steel and then transferred to primarily older oak for two months, light straw colored with a hint of a green tint and just a bare and thus tantalizing hint of the oak. Light and refined, as fresh and lively on the nose as on the palate, showing aromas and flavors of citrus, pears and apples, those along with notes of guava and minerals that arise from mid-palate on. A fine balance between ripeness and finely tuned acidity. Drink now-2012. $32. Score: 90.

Carmel, Regional, Sauvignon Blanc, Upper Galilee, 2010: Light glistening gold, unoaked and showing fine aromatics and lively acidity to support aromas and flavors of passion fruit, pink grapefruit and star fruit (carambola), all on a background that hints nicely of freshly mown grass. Very nice indeed, reflecting the ongoing local improvement with this variety. Drink now-2013. Score: 90.

Galil Mountain, Sauvignon Blanc, 2010: Light gold with green and orange tints. Unoaked, pure, crisp and well focused, with peach, citrus, tangerine and mango aromas and flavors. From mid-palate on delightful notes of key lime pie and stony minerals. Refreshing, with appealing complexity. Drink now. $18. Score: 90.

Galil Mountain, Viognier, 2010: Medium-bodied, light bright gold showing a hint of smoky oak to complement a generous mouthful of green gage plums, litchis, Anjou pears and, from mid-palate on, a note of honeydew melon. Tangy, lively and long. Drink now. Score: 90.

Golan Heights Winery, Yarden, Viognier, 2009: On the opening nose light notes of oak and flowers, those parting to make way for aromas and flavors of white peaches, pears and spices and, from mid-palate to a generous finish, notes of green-gage plums. Drink now-2013. $20. Score: 90.

Binyamina, Avnei Hachoshen, Chardonnay-Sauvignon Blanc-Viognier, Yashfeh, 2009: A medium-bodied blend of Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc and Viognier (50%, 30%, and 20% respectively). Aged in new and old oak for six months, shows a complex nose on which butternuts and ripe pears continuing to the glass and opening to reveal notes of honeydew melon and citrus peel. Finishes generously with a near-buttery texture. Drink now-2013. $16. Score: 89.

Barkan, Reserve, Chardonnay, 2009: Light gold, slightly muted when first poured but opening in the glass to show green apple, pear and green almond notes. Medium-bodied, with an appealing hint of bitterness on the finish. Drink now. $16. Score: 88.

Psagot, Viognier, 2010: Developed in new French oak for six months, light bright gold in color, medium-bodied, with generous acidity that calls to mind green apples, the acidity in fine balance with notes of spicy oak. Opens in the glass to reveal appealing spiced pears, litchis and almonds. Generous 14% alcohol, but not a sign of heat. Drink now or in the next year or so. $20. Score: 88.

Tzuba, Tel Tzuba, Chardonnay, 2009: Light bright gold in color, developed partly in stainless steel, partly in barriques (50% of which were new), and with no malolactic fermentation. Opens a bit flat but don’t let that put you off, for all this needs is a few minutes in the glass to reveal aromas and flavors of green apples, peaches and nectarines. Medium-bodied, with appealing notes of Anjou pears that come in on the finish. Drink now. $22. Score: 88.

Next month: kosher white wines from the U.S., Europe, New Zealand, and South America.


Daniel Rogov is a premier kosher wine critic and the author of two annual books, “Rogov’s Guide to Israeli Wines” and “Rogov’s Guide to Kosher Wines.” He can be reached by e-mail at drogov@cheerful.com, and his books can be ordered at www.danielrogov.com.

Daniel Rogov

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/sections/food/israeli-white-wines-for-the-summer-2/2011/06/29/

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