Golan Heights Winery: Three 2007 Syrah Wines Re-Tasted (K)
By: Daniel Rogov
This early evening I made my way to the Tel Aviv Port, not for the Golan Heights Festival that I attended yesterday but for the official unveiling of three of the 2007 Yarden Syrah releases, two single vineyards and one the regular Yarden, the tasting led by senior winemaker Victor Schoenfeld.
Let it be known loudly and clearly that among the many reasons I enjoy the port and its festivities is that no-one will tell me to put out my cigarette. Fair enough though, during the tasting I did not even think of lighting up but, if the truth be told it would not have made much difference. Even though the tasting was held at a very attractively designed bar tasting was nigh until impossible, the charming aroma of the sea water seeming to have "passed on" to the wines. I was genuinely amused. I was also very glad that I had tasted each of these wines on earlier occasions. Even critics enjoy being amused from time to time. Yup…even curmudgeonly critics.
My thanks to Victor and all from the winery who were made the tasting a very pleasnt event. My thanks as well to Jacob's Dairy for setting out fine cheese platters for nashing (snacking) after the tasting.
Yarden, Syrah, Avitral Slopes (formerly part of the Ortal Vineyard), 2007: Deep, dark and concentrated, with soft, lightly dusty tannins and notes of cedarwood. Full-bodied and aromatic, opening in the glass to show generous purple plums, blackberries and black cherries, those yielding to a comfortable hint of crème de cassis. On the long finish notes of earthy minerals and a light and tempting hint of bitterness. Drinking well now but best from 2014–2022. NIS 150. Score 93. K
Yarden, Syrah, Yonatan Vineyard, 2007: A candidate for Israel’s best Syrah to date. Almost impenetrably deep garnet in color, a deep and concentrated wine, showing still-firm tannins and generous spicy wood but those integrating nicely and showing fine balance and structure. On first attack red plums, cherries and a note of cassis liqueur, those yielding to currant and berry fruits all on a background of earthy minerals. From mid-palate on look for hints of small game birds and a note of leather that lingers nicely on to the long, long finish. Drinking well now but best from 2013–2024. NIS 150. Score 94. K
Yarden, Syrah, 2007: Inky and impenetrably dark garnet in color, full-bodied, with tremendous intensity and concentration. Opens slowly in the glass to reveal blackcurrants, black cherries, plums and raspberries, those supported very comfortably by Oriental spices, all leading to notes of red licorice on the extra-long finish. Approachable now but best 2013–2022. NIS 108. Score 92. K