Taking Care Of Business (Aug. 2012)

Another convincing statement by Gaby Sadan

Dr. Loosen, Mosel-Saar-Ruwer, Wehlener Sonnenuhr, Riesling Kabinett, 2009

Beyond the expected, obvious, typical green apples and slate, this lithe Kabinett shows flowers, guayavas and red cherries. Also expected, obvious and typical is the racy acidity. Shoulda bought more. (Aug. 3, 2012)

WineRoute, 129.90 NIS.

Caruso and Minini, Sicilia IGT, Tasari (Nero d'Avola-Merlot), 2010

Black raspberries with a tobacco leaves and a meaty, herbal, Mediterranean tint and a lightly tannic finish with pleasant mineral notes that, together with the juicy acidity, offset the mild sweetness in mid-palate. An attractive, wholesome wine that isn't shy about divulging the merits of its personality. (Aug. 4, 2012)

Fat Guy, 69 NIS. I can't think of a better red available locally at this price point. Simply lovely.

Recanati, Reserve, Syrah-Viognier, 2010

The buoyancy of a lighter style of Syrah is now more obvious than it was a few months ago. This is savory, fresh and vibrant, with notes of blackcurrants, cranberries, black pepper and underbrush (and even hints of roast beef), and if anyone had any need to manipulate the acidity, it was done seamlessly. There are more and more local wines on my table lately, but this is still my favorite, and for my palate - the best. (Aug. 16, 2012)

120-150 NIS.

Tommasi, Veronese IGT, Appassimento Adorato, 2010

I had zero expectations from this wine. In fact, I didn't even buy it. It was a bonus wine that WineRoute gave me because I made a large purchase this month and I tried it out for educational purposes; it was either that or its red sibling, the Graticcio, and I've been keeping away from the Venetian reds for years, with no intent of returning to the flock. But a white Italian is at least an area I'm willing to experiment in. I'm not sure why this isn't a Soave, as it seems to fulfill the minimum requirement for Garganega grapes. I suppose it might be because half the grapes are dried out, Amarone style. Whatever, this is a nutty, honeyed wine, well-mannered and tasty, with sweet, somewhat citrus-y fruit, but with little depth, and, quite honestly, not a lot of complexity or interest either. It's not bland, exactly, but neither is it very distinctive. (Aug. 17, 2012)

WineRoute, 90 NIS.

Shvo, Sauvignon Blanc, 2010

I loved the Rose, I liked the Red, I found the Chenin Blanc weird (but I plan to re-visit) - so this now completes my tour of the Shvo portfolio (although I never got to taste the 2009 version of the SB, which I gather, from what I've read, was sweeter, with less alcohol - something about stuck fermentation). This, too, is very idiosyncratic, smelling and tasting like someone tried to make a Corton-Charlemagne out of Sauvignon grapes. The nose has dried grass, flint, rainwater and honey, some melon being an offhand clue to the variety. The palate is dense, almost sweet, with a hum of minerals reminiscent of Savennieres. It's initially rather aggressive, but calms down with air to show a saline finish. At no point is it very typical: at half way past this slow-drinking, brooding wine, I lost my orientation enough to forget what varietal I was drinking and caught myself thinking: "maybe Chenin Blanc just isn't my thing anymore".

An interesting wine, and although I can't pledge I'll make any returns to this vintage, I'll gladly check the upcoming ones. (Aug. 18, 2012)

About 100 NIS.

Tzora, Neve Ilan, 2011

100% Chardonnay, but the label doesn't say that, it doesn't even say "White" or "Blanc" (or "Lavan", at that), because Tzora is all about terroir. Which I really like. I also really like Eran Pick, head winemaker, just in case due diligence is expected here. Anyway, this is a really lovely wine. Just a couple of months ago, it had a green grass and tropical fruit character that made me think of Sauvignon Blanc rather than Chardonnay, but now it's pure Chardonnay, and the good kind at that. You know, Chablis. Because it's so fresh and pure, with vibrant acidity that turns saline at the finish. And the aromatics already show decent chalk, citrus and apple peel led complexity. I'll see about aging a bottle for research purposes, but this is very tasty already. (Aug. 19, 2012)

A steal at 89.90 NIS.