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Aged wines from the Holly Land


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Israeli Vintages 1981-1995

Some things, you may only acquire with age.

Cabernet Sauvignon Special Reserve Carmel 1981

Say what you wish about Carmel but this winery is never short of surprises. This unique version [to be followed a decade later by other wineries with lines such as Golan Heights’ Katserin] produced in 1976,1979,1981,1988 and 1992. Certainly stood the test of time.

Red amber towards brownish color with considerable depth.

Older wine aromas dominate the nose with leather, tobacco and some dried fruits leading the gentle bouquet.

Massive in the mouth with a very good tannin structure and good acidity that will keep this wine going another three years from now.

A very good expression of a massive vintage in the Galilee with a phenomenal 13.50% alcohol and a very good balance. Soft fruity flavors hover around this wines fine structure – good show.

Ben Ami Samson region, Carmei Tsion 1983

If it was not for my appreciation of Segal [ Ashkelon] wines during the 80’s I would have termed this as a very nice surprise.

Amazing fruit of raspberry syrup, cassis and some cherry juice are extremely well tuned with the faintest bouquet of soft spice in the back. 11% alcohol did not hold this wine back from aging gracefully into a medium bodied elegant and very smooth 22 year old wine with still a good acidity and very soft tannins.

An experience worth seeking

Cabernet Sauvignon Galil, Yarden 1985.

Dark dense reddish colors with a brownish rim.

The wine went totally flat both in the nose and in the mouth.

Died and would have gone to heaven if it was not for the abuse of oak.

Ben Ami Hertsel, Selection Marcel Hess, Carmei Tsion 1986.

A light Burgundy color with amber rims.

Very gentle smooth and elegant yet lacks the power to impress.

Light forest fruit aromas float around the delicate texture with an equally noble attitude in the finish.

No more aging for this one. Sit back, relax and enjoy.


Cabernet Sauvignon Gamla 1987

Amazing but this wine can be added as an oak essence to whoever wants to save money on flavorings.

Tons of oak on the nose and again a surprising amount in the mouth.

The oak will keep several more years.

Cabernet Sauvignon Private Collection Galil 1988

Amongst Carmel’s best aged wines.

This wine should be allowed to breath for 2-3 hours before it can show its potential.

A well-structured nose based on some good use of oak with a fair amount of cassis and raspberries to support it.

Smooth and very well balanced flavors with good tannins and barely enough acidity.

Will keep well another three years from now.

Cabernet Sauvignon Meron Galil, 1991

This brave winery, signaled the beginning of the rise of boutique wineries in Israel. The winery began producing back in 1988 producing Cabernet Sauvignon and Sauvignon Blanc in smaller very dark 560 ml bottles that were higher than average commercial prices and for the first time – under no Kashrut supervision! This meant the wines could not be sold to any of the large consumers such as hotels, wedding halls and supermarkets.

This is a skeleton of what used to be a massive 13% alcohol wine.

Dark intense deep red color with brownish rims.

Slightly alcoholic nose gives way to some greenish notes and some aggressive oak.

Medium +body with plenty of green tannins but with no more fruit of any kind to support anything.

Will keep in this manner for 3-4 more years.

Cabernet Sauvignon Tsoraa 1993

Tsoraa’s 1 st wine produced by winemaker Roni James and aided by Dr. Margalit.

This is a sharp well defined wine that has passed its peak to remain with an appealing oak, sweet tobacco nose but flavors show nothing else.

Will not suffer drinking it as long as there are no expectations.

Lacks the Tsoraa character of multi-layers of herbs and dried fruits.

Castel Grand Vin 1994

Seguin-Moreau barrel makers should be proud of Eli Ben Zaken and his staff. They have cunningly used whatever wine was inside to preserve an appealing sweet oak nose mixed with subtle herbs and by far the best expression of oak flavor to be found in Israel.

No more no less.

Cabernet Sauvignon Tsoraa 1995

Three reds were produced by Tsoraa in 1995. The Cabernet Sauvignon Tsoraa vineyards 1995, the Cabernet Sauvignon Tsoraa Galil 1995 – the last proof winemaker James needed to focus on his own Beith Shemesh vineyards and the Special Selection. As the latter is sold out – we went for the regular 1995.

Avoiding the bad vintage of 1994 this is the first true Tsoraa expression. A wonderful nose of sweet dried fruits, green almonds, sweet tobacco, herbs and some nutmeg and Cinnamon turns the sniffing into a pleasure.

Very soft on the entry and explodes in the back – another Tsoraa characteristics No longer mouth filling as before, this wine is heading down hill and best consumed during 1995 and 1996.

During our lives, we may encounter some free spirits. Envy might arise simply because we have decided to imprison our own minds.

Edited by Andre (log)

Andre Suidan

I was taught to finish what I order.

Life taught me to order what I enjoy.

The art of living taught me to take my time and enjoy.

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