Last night we opened a bottle that had been given to us as a present by Naftali Admoni. He purchased it when we last visited Eyal who founded this boutique winery in 2001 in the basement of his home on Moshav Kerem Ben Zimra. This wine is made from Shiraz grapes grown in the family vineyard. The initial fermentation of 12 days is carried out on the grapes with their skins and then is rested for two weeks before transfer to barrels for a period of 18 months.
We were pleasantly surprised by this wine, having been disappointed by the winery’s blend of Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot in the past. This was the usual Shiraz deep purple. In fact, it was so dark colored that it appeared almost black. The aromas emitted were gentle and unobtrusive and reminded me of what we used to experience in our apple orchard after the harvest when there were dropped fruit on the ground. Nurit said it carried her through a chocolate factory in an old wooden building in the country. In the mouth it was full and robust with a long aftertaste, though at times a bit astringent. This is, perhaps, related to its high alcohol content of 15%. Nurit tasted the treat she used to buy each passover at the Butcherie. This was the candy produced in Israel and made from dark chocolate filled with raspberries. I tasted a combination of fruits, nuts, honey and spices.
I don’t recall the price Naftali paid so it is hard to fit it into our grading system which is partially based on value for the money, but I would give it an 89 or 90 in the Parker grading system. We must go back to Moshav Kerem Ben Zimra and visit Eyal again to taste some more of his wines, and, if the price is right, purchase some more of his Shiraz. I’ll take some photos and write a “Visit To The Winery” article.
ADDENDUM – The next night, we opened a Dalton Shiraz Reserve, also from the 2008 vintage. The Miles Shiraz was more smooth and less harsh. We prefer it and will investigate the prices of these two Shiraz varietals.