Founded by the late Daniel Rogov, focusing primarily on wines that are either kosher or Israeli.
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Pinchas L


Wine guru




Fri Apr 17, 2009 2:04 pm


Brooklyn, NY

TN for Weekend of September 8th, 2018

by Pinchas L » Sun Sep 09, 2018 1:30 pm

This weekend turned out to be an interesting one, which also qualifies it as being very enjoyable, though to a large extend in a ponderous way.

After several years of not having a Roussanne, I opened a bottle of Don Ernesto Collage 2015, which is a wine made by Hagafen Cellars and is a blend of Roussanne and Marsanne. This vintage has a leaner body than what I recall from past vintages. It is lifted by some oomph, that I sense as coming from some barrel aging, not from acidity. On its own, the wine is interesting, but with food, it shines. What makes it so outstanding with food, are its salinity, bitterness and nuttiness, qualities that somewhat overpower the fruit, turning into assets once the fruit is no longer meant to be the focal point--which is when consumed alongside a dish.

The red was a bottle of Jezreel Alpha 2016. It's mostly Syrah (60%) with the remainder split between Argaman--one of the few indigenous Israeli varieties--and Cabernet Sauvignon. The associations drawn by alpha are: alpha male and Alpha Romeo, although the winemaker named it after Beit Alpha, an ancient Israeli city. These associations should be self explanatory to anyone sipping the wine. The Syrah hits the palate first, with its traditional spice, but then the Argaman kicks in, like a Romeo's turbo charge or the male's assertiveness with coarse and bitter tannins. Maybe on its own, I would think ill of the Argaman's contribution, but in the context of the Syrah and the Cabernet Sauvignon, I found it wonderful. I wonder if my fascination with the wine is merely a product of its novelty. I'll find out only once I have another bottle. The wine is Mevushal and sells for about $22 with an AbV of 14.1%

Best Regards and Shana Tova,

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