From Adversity, Wine

February 2, 2015

Reviews of the Yatir Viognier 2010 and Haig Club Single Grain Scotch Whisky.

Many of the world’s finest wines, counter intuitive though it might seem, are actually created from grapes that grow in surprisingly meager conditions. Conditions that would cause other crops to suffer—like nutrient-poor soil, sparse water and daily temperature fluctuations—can stimulate the vines to concentrate whatever the land and microclimate has to offer on making the grapes more flavorful for wine. Proper viticultural practices, like careful pruning, trellising, keeping away pests, and the like, are obviously crucial components, but nature’s bounty remains the most fundamentally important element. So, all things being equal, winemakers tend to prefer vineyards in locations that will greatly, though beneficially, stress the vines.

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It’s Almost Summer – Daiquiri Season

May 2, 2013

A review of the Yatir Sauvignon Blanc 2010 and a look at the Daiquiri.

Sauvignon Blanc is one of our favorite warm weather wines. It is produced around the winemaking world in a number of different styles ranging from dry to very sweet dessert wines. The bright flavors and balanced acidity typical of well made dry, nonsweet versions of Sauvignon Blancs pair well with lighter summer fare, including cheeses, salads and even sushi; it makes for delightful backyard deck or picnic sipping.

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Second Label Doesn’t Mean Second Rate

October 7, 2012

Tio Pepe Fino Sherry

A review of Yatir Red Wine 2007 and Tio Pepe Fino Sherry.

A great many wineries produce what is called a “second wine” or, more commonly these days, a “second label” in order to make use of grapes not selected for blending into their “first label” wine. This practice enables producers to be more selective in creating their “first label” wine without having to sacrifice quality for profit by devaluing their brand just to make use of excess grapes. This practice also allows them to diversify a little across price-points, and generate a second revenue stream – often to support greater investment in their “first label.” Selling wine at $100 a bottle is great, but if you also have quality wine to sale at $25 a bottle, you will likely sell more wine across both price points. This allows producers to harness their brand name and distribution network to make the most of their quality juice.

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‘Sabbatical’ Salutations From Israel

January 25, 2012

Michter's American Whiskey

Reviews of the Yatir Forest 2008, the Michter’s U.S. No. 1 Small-Batch Bourbon, the Michter’s U.S. No. 1 Unblended American Whiskey and the Michter’s U.S. No. 1 Single-Barrel Straight Rye.

The story goes that when David Ben-Gurion was told by his scientific advisors that it would be impossible to plant trees in the northern Negev, he responded by getting new advisors. The result was Israel’s Yatir Forest, the 30-square-mile woodland along the southern slope of Mount Hebron. There are more than 4 million trees thriving in the Yatir Forest. Planted under the direction of Yosef Weitz and the Jewish National Fund, the Yatir Forest has become an international model of desert reclamation and ecologically healthy responses to climate change.

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Four Cups, Four Wines – Why Not?

April 10, 2008

Goose Bay Pinot Noir

Some suggestions for Passover wines.

The four cups of wine served at Pesach gives each guest the opportunity to expand their wine horizons. The significant increases in quality kosher wine producers around the globe and their willingness to try different varietals have enhanced the choices available for this year’s sedarim. This improvement is most readily apparent in Israel, which has been the recent recipient of some very favorable wine press. But it can also be seen in the kosher wines from locations as diverse as California, Spain, Italy, France, Australia and New Zealand.

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Treat Your Guests to Great Wines From Israel

May 24, 2007

Recanati Wine

Israeli wine reviews including Recanati, Agur, Ben Hanna, Domaine du Castel, and Yatir.

The next time you are expecting guests, whether for an intimate dinner party or an open house, consider serving wine from one of Israel’s wineries. World-class kosher wines are being produced at a growing number number of excellent wineries in the Holy Land, spearheaded by winemakers with a mission to continue to improve their products.

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