100% Gewurztraminer ice wine from Golan Heights, Galilee, Israel. (Kosher)
SRP of $27 for a 375ml bottle and available for as low as $23 (Saturday Splurge). Sample submitted for review.
From the bottle:
"Yarden HeightsWine is made from frozen clusters of Gewurztraminer. This sweet wine, made in the style of classic icewine, can be enjoyed cold with goose liver or rich desserts.
Best served at about 45F.
Sugar at harvest: 39 Degrees Brix
Residual sugar: 17.9 g/l
Kosher for Passover
Today's wine is not only the first we've reviewed from Israel but also the first ice wine we've covered. Ice wine is made from grapes that are left to freeze on the vine, or in the case of today's wine, where that is not practical they can be frozen in the winery. Why frozen grapes? The reason is that when the grapes freeze the sugars in the grape stay unfrozen while the water does not. Pressing the grapes when frozen thus results in a sweet, concentrated juice perfect for a dessert wine.
It's also a bit surprising to me that for an area so historically renowned for winemaking, we see so little Israeli wine in the United States. It'll take some looking but there are some nice wines from this region available, even under $20, and we'll be covering several of them in upcoming posts.
The 2010 Golan Heights Winery Yarden HeightsWine Gewurztraminer Ice Wine begins with aromas of peaches, apricots, tropical fruits and honeysuckle plus a little cinnamon and pine tree. The wine tastes deliciously sweet with a rich, smooth and even a bit creamy texture. It exhibits great depth of flavor with pear, apricot and mango flavors plus a whole lot of honey and a little spice. Good acidity helps to offset all the sweetness. It ends with good length featuring more sweet fruit and highlighted with lots of sweet vanilla and cinnamon. This wine would be an excellent match with any rich dessert, but why bother as it makes a fabulous dessert all by itself!
See a listing of local retailers selling this wine here.
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