Ben Zimra Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve, Yatir Rose 2014, Jezreel Valley Rose

Ben Zimra Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve 2011 Price NIS 120

Kerem Ben Zimra Vineyard, Binyamina Winery wines
The Ben Zimra vineyards

The vineyard in Moshav Ben Zimra is shared amongst a number of wineries. Notably, Adir, Dalton, Carmel Mizrachi, Binyamina and others. The Moshav itself has a very small boutique winery which uses the the vineyard called "Kerem Ben Zimra" (Ben Zimra Vineyard) which is rather confusing seeing as the other wineries print on their labels "Kerem Ben Zimra" as well to tell us that the grapes have come from the Ben Zimra vineyard but obviously are not connected to the winery of the same name.

It's kind of like Tomintoul who used to state on their labels Tomintoul-Glenlivet region even though they have nothing to do with the distillery "The Glenlivet" apart from being in the same region.

Anyway, this is a very small bottling (less than 1000, I don't know the exact amount). I tried this back in 2012 and found it had very harsh tannins and still needing maturation. Now it's 3 years later and the ugly duckling has transformed into a swan.

Upon first opening on Friday afternoon I immediately smelt wonderful dark berries and bitter chocolate on the nose with a slight hint of old cave dampness, but just a hint. I placed the bottle in my cocktail cabinet until we returned from shul and had finished  singing Shalom Aleichem and Eishes Chayal and given brachos to all the kids. This turned out to be around 2 hours.

I took the bottle out of cocktail cabinet and placed it on the Shabbos table. Whilst pouring for everyone I Smelt the wine again. The dampness had completely disappeared. Instead a wonderful rich deep fruity berries....loads of body and dark pareve coffee and chocolate confection met my nose.

Kiddush said, tasting was even better than the smelling. Deliciously rich, deep dark berries, a hint of apple strudel, (that wet pastry taste) and sprinklings of dark chocolate. A hint of roasted coffee beans and black pepper and Cinnamon on the finish.

Final Words:
An absolute masterpiece of a Cabernet Sauignon.

Highly Recommended!

Yatir Rose 2014. Price NIS 80


We opened this for Shabbos lunch. The weather outside was around 28 degrees, quite cool for Israel for this time of year but still pretty warm so we were looking forward to a refreshing summer wine for Kiddush. The bottle had been sitting in the fridge for a few hours so was nice a cold upon opening.

Smelling Notes:
Exquisite Aroma of an English Rose garden. Powerful and fresh with natural perfumed Rose blossom. Like lying in a bed of rose petals. Quite often you get a perfumed blossom aroma from Roses but the smell is more like room freshner or dare I say, toilet cleaner. This was the real thing! Such a delightful aroma I could have carried on enjoying the smell for a good few minutes but everyone was hot and thirsty so it was time to say Kiddush.
Taste: Lush Sweet ripe peaches and blossoms. Too sweet for me. However my family, especially my wife loved it. I personally preferred the smell to the taste but then again, I'm not that keen on sweet wines.
Final Words:
Highly Recommended for those who enjoy sweet summery wines.

Jezreel Valley Rose 2012 Price: NIS 80

This winery is situated inside Kibbutz Hanaton, east of Haifa. Now, we were really looking forward to this one as I personally rate the Jezreel Valley Chardonnay 2012 and 2013 as some of the finest and most perfectly balanced Chardonnays I have ever tasted. We were hoping for the same high standards but just a sweet Rose version...

Unfortunately it was not to be.

Smelling Notes:

Smelt of some generic raspberry fruit cordial syrup ("Mitz Petal").

Tasting Notes:

Tastes like Gerber baby food puree. A mixture of Peach, Pear and Berry.

Final Words:

Not impressed!


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