Dalton Reserve Sauvignon Blanc 2007 review


Dalton Reserve Sauvignon Blanc 2007. NIS 55
I have already written a review of the Dalton Reserve Merlot 2007 which was very positive. I also enjoyed very much the Dalton Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve 2007 (NIS 109) although we drank this with some quite heavy food. I’d like to buy another bottle before doing a proper review in the future but I can tell you now that it’s a smashing wine. Heavy and full of depth.
The question is, we know that Dalton knows how to make exceptional reds but how good are they at the whites? Well I came across this Dalton Reserve Sauvignon Blanc 2007 last week in a shop in Machaneh Yehuda, Yerushalayim called “HaSamayach” in rechov Agrippas on special offer for NIS 55.
The back label recommends serving at a temperature of between 8 and 10 degrees Celsius. I think they are doing themselves a disservice as it would be a shame to drink it at such a low temperature. I’d recommend around 12 to 16 degrees Celsius otherwise it will deprive the drinker of all that flavour and depth.
Hechshirim:

No less than four excellent Kashrus Certificates:
OU (Orthodox Union)
Badatz Yoreh Daah, Rav HaGaon Shlomo Machpud, Israel
Machon LeKashrus: HaRav Mordechai Ungar, New York. USA.
Local Rabbanut Authority: Rav Almashalei Yoseph, Marom HaGalil, Israel

We opened the wine from the fridge (not from the wine cooler) and I felt that it was far too cold. Consequently I asked my wife if we could wait about 15 minutes before drinking in order to allow the bottle to warm up a little bit. Even so, when I came to pour the wine out, the glasses immediately formed a film of condensation around the outside. We waited another 5 minutes and then recited a slow Kiddush.
The colour is almost water clear like with a subtle greenish tinge.
Nosing the wine:
A word about glasses.
Usually our family drink white wine in thin tulip shaped wine glasses, around 150cc to 170cc in volume. In Israel, they call them  "Champan" glasses and I remember having a heated discussion with a saleswoman in one of the “Nechmad” stores in Yerushalayim when I said that we drank white wine in them. “Oh no”, she said in a condescending tone and smile, “these glasses are for drinking Champagne”. I ignored her and bought them anyway.

So called "Champagne" glasses. Ideal for enjoying any white wine

It’s a similar story with so called “whisky glasses” or tumblers. I never use one of these wide flat tumblers as they are designed for drinking whisky soda or whisky on the rocks. Please do not drink single malts out of these! The best glass for appreciating single malts is a relatively small (around 60 to 90cc in volume) bell shaped or even tulip shaped glass. For white wine, obviously you require a larger glass but actually it should be the same type of shape in my opinion. What we want is to collect all those spirits and flavours and concentrate and direct them to your nose. This action works best with a glass that goes out in the middle and gets narrow towards the top.
Good for "on the rocks", not for Single Malts!
Some examples of good Single Malt tasting glasses

If you don’t believe the difference a glass makes, try it yourself. Pour the same wine or single malt into glasses of different shapes. Nose them once without swirling and then again after a good swirl of the glass and I hope you will agree with me that there is a huge difference when it comes to nosing information and sheer enjoyment.
Putting my nose in this glass of Dalton for the first time brought mostly freezing cold fumes with a slight acidic lemony, Esrog note. I warmed the wine up slightly in hand by swirling it around for about half a minute. Another sniff and now all those aromas were coming through. Lots of soft freshly squeezed Tropical fruit juice with a dash of lemon. There was prominent melon, pineapple and green apple notes. Overall impression from colour and nose was of a very light fresh liquid.
Tasting notes:
Although light in nature, incredibly you still get massive amounts of tropical fruits flavour but, as I said, without the heaviness. Particularly prominent flavours are initially pineapple but this transforms quickly into definite passion fruit juice. My whole family agreed that passion fruit was the nearest comparison to what we were tasting. When the wine warmed up a bit, out came some sharp green apple peel, esrog rind and pears as well. There is an acidic bite to this wine like biting into a freshly cut young pineapple.

It’s an exciting wine, refreshing and fruity with a respectable but I have to say, relatively short finish. Had we left any wine in the bottle and let it warm up a bit more, it’s probable that the finish would have been longer. Another indication that you should ignore the label’s recommendation and drink this excellent white at a warmer temperature than they seem to think. My daughter, who much prefers the smoother heavier chardonnays to the Sauvignon Blancs, admitted that she did enjoy this wine but still prefers the buttery yellow stuff any day.
I thoroughly enjoyed this wine and thought it perfect for Shabbos morning Kiddush.
As always, I like to compare any wine I review with the Ramat HaGolan equivalent. All Sauvignon Blancs should be light with only a little body weight yet I felt that compared to the Golan Heights Yarden Sauvignon Blanc, this Dalton was ever so slightly heavier with a bit more fruity body although its almost clear colour suggests the opposite. Only goes to show that colour is not a good indicator of taste.
I’ve tasted three Daltons Reserve range so far and have loved all of them.  A spoke last Shabbos to a friend in shul who had just been to the Dalton winery and experienced their tour there. He told me that the tour lasted almost two hours and was by far the best winery tour he had been too. They served them wine from their middle range, (around the NIS 60 price range) and he thought they were really good value for money. He suggested I try these as well. Beli neder, I will.

Comments

  1. Do you not drink any wine below the 50 NIS range? I can rarely afford buying these wines that you drink. They must be a real treat though. I was once given a Dalton wine (can’t remember which), but wasn’t all that impressed. I actually enjoyed some of the real cheap wines (35-45NIS) more than the Dalton that I had. Who knows, maybe it was just a bad bottle.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Your wish is my command. Beli neder I'll post some reviews of some NIS 50 wines soon. Any suggestions?

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  3. Is OD on the front also a hechsher?

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  4. Actually it's the emblem od Dalton winery. Simple in design but effective. I suspect however you knew this didn't you and your comment was an attempt at humour.

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  5. Yes, I did say this as a wise-crack. I tried putting smile in-between angular brackets but these did not appear in the posting.

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