Posts Tagged ‘Israeli wines’

Wine of Israel “Mediterranean Inspiration” 2010

Wednesday, November 3rd, 2010

Following the success of the first Wines of Israel tasting, the Israeli Economic Mission with the help of the Dunn Robbins group put on the 2nd Wines of Israel event today in NYC (following a similar event in Houston this past Monday).

Though I was able to sneak around and taste the wines of some other Israeli wineries I spent a majority of my time at the Carmel table, proudly pouring wine.

As a Carmel (and Yatir) employee I don’t think it too appropriate to get into too many details about specific wines, but I would like to share a few general thoughts.

The number of wineries represented at the event was down from 20 last time to 15.  I believe this is in large part due to the significant investment required to participate (cost of wines, airline tickets, hotels,  “table” cost, etc.).  Given the exposure I think it is worth every penny, but it is still a significant expense that is probably not fiscally possible for many of the smaller wineries.  (I do believe all the large “commercial” wineries were there.)

There was a four person panel and once again I was a bit disappointed by the overall tone which seemed a bit negative.  Sure Israeli wines have had a challenging time overcoming the stigma of “kosher wines”, but I think Israeli wines have across the board made tremendous strides and most industry people recognize this   As a whole the industry would be better served by focusing on the positive developments rather than the challenges it still faces (which I think is a topic more appropriate for internal discussion).

Overall however this was really a tremendous event.  Well attended by members of the press & trade, people I spoke with were WOW-ed by the wines they tried.  Of the wines I tasted at other tables I felt almost all were very well-made wines that we can all be quite proud of.  Sure there was an overly oaky Chardonnay, an overripe Cabernet and lots of wines with alcohol levels exceeding 14% abv, but there were few (if any) wines I’d be embarrassed to serve in my home.

I now, more than ever, firmly believe that there IS a place in the mainstream wine world for Israeli wines.  I hope today’s event helped many of the attendees to share that sentiment.

Happy Israeli Wine Tasting!


Country specific wine tastings & Israeli wine recognition

Friday, October 31st, 2008

Not much time to write today, but I have gone to many wine tastings throughout NYC the past few years.  Very often these tasting are Spanish wine tastings, or Italian wine tastings, or Chilean wine tastings – tastings that are specific to one country.  I think this is a great way to promote the wines from that country, or even region as the case may be.

HOWEVER, most of these tastings tend to include wineries who are seeking representation in this country.  And sadly most of the wines are pretty nondescript.  Rarely have I had a truly BAD wine, but it is even less rare that I find a wine that really excites me.  SO, are these tastings worthwhile?  Is it worth my time?  Does it help the wineries who pay a lot of money to attend, stay in hotels, pour their wine?  I wonder…

Also of note lately is the recognition Israeli wines truly seem to be getting.  At the aforementioned wine tasting I met a guy while tasting.  He asked what I did and I told him that I work with and specialize in Israeli wines.  He told me that he has been hearing good things about Israeli wines and proceeded to tell me about an Israeli Sauvignon Blanc he and others tried at a blind tasting that was the hit of a tasting.

Then, just yesterday I was in a coffee shop on the phone with someone discussing Israeli wines.  When I hung up a woman who had obviously overheard parts of my conversation asked if I work with Israeli wines.  When I told her that I did she told me that she had recently read an article about Israeli wines and that she has been hearing good things about them.

Pretty cool stuff kids.  The gospel is spreading.  Israeli wines are on their way into the mainstream.  It may take a while longer, but it is starting…

Happy weekend wine tasting!!!