2010 International Food & Wine Festival at Herzog Wine Cellars Wine Reviews

I wrote a posting, about the wonderful 2010 International Food & Wine Festival at Herzog Wine Cellars that occurred February 3, 2010.  As stated previously, this is the third incarnation of this wine festival, where Royal Wines pulls out all stops, and displays more than 200 wines, and some of its very best ones to boot.

On an aside, I thought I would list the wines I missed, and ones that I do not think you should miss given the chance.

  1. 2007 Domaine de Maltaverne Pouilly Fume’ Bokobsa Selection
  2. Segal Argaman, Rechasim, Dovev Vineyard

Please find my wine notes below in the order they were tasted:

2008 Covenant Lavan Chardonnay, Napa Valley – Score: A- to A
The nose on this vibrant yellow colored wine is screaming with lychee, green apple, guava, peach, oak, and almonds.  The mouth on this full bodied wine is creamy and hopping with butterscotch, apple, peach, and oak.  The mid palate is balanced and structured with bracing acidity, spicy oak, oak tannins, and mineral.  The finish is long and creamy, with more butterscotch, almonds, oak, peach, and lychee.

2007 Selection Bokobsa Sancerre - Score: B to B+
The nose on this light gold colored wine has peach, dry mineral, dirt, bright acidity, apricot, and goose berry.  The mouth on this light bodied wine carries from the nose with peach, apple, and goose berry.  The mid palate is bright with acidity and mineral.  The finish is long with peach, apple, bracing acidity, and mineral.

2003 Francois Labet Puligny-Montrachet - Score: B to B+
The nose on this light gold to gold colored wine is hopping with butter, rich apple, oak, guava, and green fruit.  The mouth on this medium bodied wine is filled with spicy oak, butter, mineral, and apple.  The mid palate is oaky with more butter, acid, and green fruit.  The finish is long with green fruit, mineral, and a dollop of butter.  This one was far better a few years ago.

2002 Corton-Charlemagne Grand Cru - Score: C+
This wine was dead with close to no nose and a bit of almonds, peach, apple, and oak.  This one is pretty much dead, drink up what you have or leave it alone as a paper weight.

2007 Domaine l’Or de Line Chateauneuf de Pape – Score: B+ to A-
Would love to know how Herzog pulled this one off, and who is the negotiant for this wine.  I found a lovely write-up about the winery and the name, anyway, on to the note.

The nose on this light gold colored wine is hopping with lemon, goose berry, mineral, apple, and white peach.  The mouth on this medium bodied wine carries the nose, with white peach, goose berry, green apple, and mineral.  The mid palate is round, balanced, but still bracing with acidity, and mineral.  The finish is long with clean yet round flavors of apple, peach, and a hint of spice.  Quite a nice wine.

2008 Goose Bay Sauvignon Blanc – Score: B+
The nose on this light gold colored wine is hopping with rich ripe gooseberry, lemon, peach, apple, and guava.  The mouth on this medium bodied wine is filled with rich ripe fruit that follows the nose with gooseberry, lemon, peach, and guava.  The mid palate is acidic with light amount of oak, and lemon.  The finish is long with lemon, acid, and tart lemon.

2007 Goose Bay Pinot Gris – Score: B+
The nose on this straw colored wine has melon, pear, and peach. The mouth on this medium bodied wine is ripe, super sweet fruit, with pear, melon, and peach. The mid palate is balanced with nice acidity and fruit. The finish is long with a bit more sweet wood and crisp flavors of lemongrass. A nice showing for this Pinot Gris.

2007 Castel ‘C’ Chardonnay – Score: A- to A
The nose on this striking gold colored wine is SCREAMING with heavy toasted oak – almost burnt, butter, apple, melon, peach, vanilla, and spice.  The mouth on this rich and explosive full bodied wine follows the nose with crazy heavy toast green apple, melon, peach, and lemon.  The mid palate is packed with more toasty oak, bracing acid, and spice.  The finish is super long and heavily extracted with creme brulee, rich oak, orange peel, apple, and lemon.  Definitely, not a wine for everyone, but one that everyone needs to try!  It is crazy fun and would love to see what all the burnt oak turns into, some nice butterscotch or maybe some more bitterness.

2007 Binyamina Sauvignon Blanc Reserve, Galil – Score: B+ to A-
First thing you will notice about this wine is the screw top closure.  Personally, I have nothing against screw top closures, especially those from the Stelvin Corporation, as they allow for basic aging and remove all potential for taint.  The nose on this straw colored wine is filled with gooseberry, lemon grass, apple, and peach.  The mouth on this medium bodied wine is bright with lemon, peach, gooseberry.  The mid palate is lemony and bright with mild mineral notes.  The finish is super long with lemon grass, peach, mineral notes, and bright sweet fruit.

2007 Binyamina Chardonnay Reserve (un-oaked) - Score: B to B+
First thing you will notice about this wine is the screw top closure.  Personally, I have nothing against screw top closures, especially those from the Stelvin Corporation, as they allow for basic aging and remove all potential for taint.  The nose on this dark straw colored wine is filled with apple, peach, melon, lemon, and honey.  The mid palate is filled with acid and apple.  The finish is long with acid and fresh bright fruit.

2007 Binyamina Yogev Chardonnay/Sauvignon Blanc Blend – Score: B+
The nose on this straw colored wine is popping with fresh fig, lemon, and grapefruit.  The mouth on this medium bodied wine is filled with grapefruit, lemon and acidity.  The mid palate is bracing with more lemon and acidity.  The finish is long with lemon and fig.  A nice hot summer day wine.

2004 Binyamina Onyx (Shoham) Chardonnay – Score: B+
I was shocked that they brought a 2004 of this wine; this wine was dated to be DOA by now.  Most fruit was gone, and all that was left was oak extraction elements.  The nose on this dark gold colored wine is filled with orange peel, sweet oak, Crème brûlée, toasted almond, and green apple.  The mouth on this full bodied wine has oak, acid, apple, and almonds.  The mid palate is acidic and oaky.  The finish is super long and creamy, rich and toasty with green fruit and oak, and a lovely dollop of Crème brûlée on the finish.

2007 Barkan Chardonnay Reserve - Score: B+
The nose on this light gold colored wine is hopping with Crème brûlée, toasty almond, apple, peach, toasty oak, and lychee.  The mouth on this medium bodied wine has green apple, lemon, peach, and lychee.  The mid palate is bracing with acid, oak, and slight minerality.  The finish is long and bright with a bit of toasty oak roundness and green fruit.

2007 Herzog Chardonnay Reserve, Russian River – Score: A-
The nose on this light gold colored wine is hopping with toasted oak, lemon, almond, peach, apple, and butter.  The mouth on this full bodied wine is creamy with butter, apple, lemon, and peach.  The mid palate is bright and balanced with bright acid and oak.  The finish is long and creamy with lemon, spicy oak, and nutmeg.

2006 Herzog Pinot Noir Reserve, Edna Valley - Score: B+
The nose on this dark ruby colored wine is filled with smoky oak, cherry, cranberry, and raspberry.  The mouth on medium bodied wine is mouth coating with cherry, raspberry, oak, and Kirsch cherry.  The mid palate is integrated with spicy oak, acid, and integrated tannin.  The finish is long and lush with cherry, oak, and spice.

2006 Herzog Generation VIII Cabernet Sauvignon, Napa Valley, To-Kalon Vineyards - Score: A
We tasted this blockbuster last year, and to be honest, it will probably be the only time we will ever taste this wine.  Why? Because it costs around 180 dollars! That said, the wine is well worth it, if you have that kind of cash. Last year’s tasting notes mimic this year’s note – which makes me feel good, but, there is a TON of chocolate on the nose this year.  It may have been there last year, but we missed it, if it was.

The nose on this black colored wine is screaming with rich oak, chocolate, black cherry, blackberry, cassis, and rich spice.  The mouth on this massive full bodied wine is rich, layered, and mouth coating with tight tannins, chocolate, oak, blackberry, and cassis.  The fruit on the mouth is rich and ripe while not being overly ripe to the point of tasting cooked.  The mid palate is balanced and flows from the mouth with still bracing tannins, nice acidity, oak, and chocolate.  The finish is crazy long with chocolate, rich oak, blackberry, and rich ripe fruit.  This is a crazy winner that will be around for at least another 8 years.  I hope to have the opportunity to taste it again and again in the coming years at the Herzog Wine Festival.

2007 Herzog Cabernet Sauvignon Single Vineyard, Haystack Peak Vineyard – Score: A-
This wine is not one of those over the top blockbuster Cabernet.  This wine is a more sophisticated character than a gruff American with a baseball bat in his hands, which is what many American Cabernet taste like, at times.  This wine is polished yet approachable.  Quite a nice job indeed.

The nose on this dark ruby to garnet colored wine is hopping with toasty oak, raspberry, smoke, fig, roasted herbs, and black cherry.  The mouth on this medium to full bodied wine is filled with raspberry, fig, chocolate, and black cherry.  The mid palate is balanced with acid and integrating tannins.  The finish is long with oak, chocolate, and darkish fruit.

2007 Covenant Red C – Score: A-
The nose on this dark garnet colored wine is hot initially out of the bottle, with coffee, blackberry, cassis, chocolate, and vanilla. The mouth on the medium to full bodied wine is nice with rich and ripe fruit of blackberry, cassis, and cherry. The mid palate is balanced with nice acid, integrated tannin, oak, and coffee. The finish is super long and luscious with bright acid, blackberry, chocolate, and oak.

2007 Covenant Cabernet Sauvignon – Score: A- to A
The nose on this purple to black colored wine is screaming with sweet oak, blackberry, chocolate, mocha, fig, and raspberry. The mouth on this rich and full bodied wine is full in the mouth with mocha, raspberry, blackberry, cassis, and sweet oak. The mid palate is balanced with acid, spicy oak, and nice tannin. The finish is long and luscious with oak, tannin, chocolate, and dark fruit.

2007 Herzog Chalk Hill Clone Six Cabernet Sauvignon – Score: A-
The nose on this wine is closed initially, but opens with red fruit, oak, blackberry, cassis, and chocolate. The mouth on this full bodied wine has a lovely mouthfeel and is rich and concentrated with blackberry, cassis, and sweet rich oak. The mid palate is balanced and rich with nice oak, acid, and spicy chocolate. The finish is long with chocolate, vanilla, acid, spicy oak, and cassis, all in a lovely rich finish.

2003 Chateau de la Tour Clos Vougeot, Grand Cru – Score: B or A-
AHH!!! This wine is infuriating! One bottle is rich and extracted and crazy cool, the next time I taste it from a different bottle it is DOA. The thing I do with the French wines is taste them a few times along the evening, as they tend to be hit and miss. If I find a wine that is consistent across bottles, we are good. This is NOT one of them. So, really it is almost a waste of time to write the notes I have as they are almost contradictory. It is a shame, and I would be careful if I buy this bottle to make sure that it can be returned if you get a DOA bottle, or better, just stay clear of it all together.

2005 Chateau Malartic Lagraviere Grand Cru Pessac-Leognan – Score: A- to A
WOW what a killer wine. The nose on this dark garnet colored wine is smoking with an almost smoke screen like aroma, serious spice, over a sea of intense dry and candied cherry, raspberry, blackberry, and fig. The mouth on this blockbuster full bodied wine is intense and concentrated with lovely tannin, cherry, raspberry, blackberry, and more intense flavors. The mid palate is balanced and flows off the intense mouth with oak, acid, and coffee. The finish is super long and concentrated with bright fruit, acid, fat cigar tobacco, and a long slug of mocha.

2003 Chateau Pontet Canet, Pauillac – Score: A-
The nose on this vibrant dark garnet colored wine is packed with dirty mineral aromas, oak, smoky notes, fig, spice, anise, and red fruit. The mouth on this full bodied wine is full in the mouth with lovely tannin, layers of fruit, crazy extraction, and oak. The mid palate flows off the mouth with oak, crazy nice tannin, lovely extraction, and chocolate. The finish is crazy long with mounds of chocolate, layers of red fruit, and more crazy nice tannin.

2002 Chateau Leoville Poyferre Saint Julien – Score: A-
The nose on this dark garnet colored wine is screaming with sweet oak, candied cherry, ripe raspberry, coffee, dark chocolate. The mouth on this full bodied wine is ripe and full in the mouth with ripe raspberry, cherry, and layered with oak, and more red fruit. The mid palate is balanced with sweet oak, spice, and coffee. The finish is super long with oak, red fruit, chocolate, and ripe raspberry.

2002 Chateau Fonbadet Pauillac – Score: B
The nose on this ruby colored wine has mineral notes, cherry, raspberry, and smoky oak. The mouth on this medium bodied wine follows the nose with raspberry, cherry, and mineral. The mid palate is balanced with acid, tannin, oak, and coffee. The finish has oak, coffee, and red fruit flavors.

2007 Domaine des 3 Cellier Chateauneuf du Pape – Score:  B to B+
The nose on this light garnet colored wine is rich with ripe raspberry, candied fruit, spice, and smoky notes. The mouth on this medium bodied wine is rich with candied red fruit and ripe raspberry. The mid palate is packed with nice balanced acid, spice, and smoky notes. The finish is long with more of the same, raspberry, candied fruit, spice, and smoky notes.

2000 Chateau La Mouline - Score: B+
The nose on this garnet to dark garnet colored wine is filled with cranberry, cherry, smoky oak, and tobacco. The mouth on this medium bodied wine is tannic with nice tart plum and raspberry fruit, and cherry. The mid palate is balanced with acid and oak. The finish is long with more tart fruit, sweet oak, and tobacco.

2005 Chateau La Fleur Jonquet – Score: B+
The nose on this garnet colored wine is hopping with cherry, raspberry, smoke, dirt leanings, and lovely toasty oak. The mouth on this medium bodied wine follows the nose with more cherry, raspberry, and loam. The mid palate is balanced with acid, oak, and integrated tannin. The finish is long with more red fruit, tannin, and toasty oak.

2006 Chateau le Breuil Renaissance Medoc – Score: B
The nose on this ruby colored wine has ripe fruit, oak, raspberry, and ripe cherry. The mouth on this medium bodied wine has plum, ripe cherry, and raspberry. The mid palate has oak and nice integrating tannin. The finish has a bouquet of ripe red fruit.

2003 Sarget de Gruaud Larose, Saint Julien – Score: B++
The nose on this garnet colored wine is hopping and concentrated with rich mineral, black currant, raspberry, cherry, and oak. The mouth on this medium to full bodied wine follows the nose with concentrated with layers of cherry, black currant, and raspberry. The mid palate flows off the mouth and is balanced with coffee, chocolate, acid, and oak. The finish is long with cherry, chocolate, coffee, and red fruit.

2007 Binyamina Diamond, Avnei Hachoshen Ya’alom (50% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Syrah and 20% Petite Verdot) – Score: A
Wow what a blockbuster wine! Assaf Paz brought it to the tasting, and it was in very limited supply, as we said in the previous posting about the wine event.

The nose on this garnet to black colored wine explodes with sweet oak, rich and ripe blackberry, licorice, raspberry, chocolate, rich plum, along with a bit of prune. The mouth on this broad shouldered and massive wine is packed and layered with layer upon layers of rich and ripe black fruit, blackberry, and raspberry. The mid palate is balanced and flows off the mouth with rich sweet oak, acid, chocolate, and coffee. The finish is massive and long with a huge mouth coating structure, along with prune, oak, blackberry, and chocolate. This is a massive and structured wine that is unique and one that truly shows the power of Israel’s potential.

2007 Capcanes Peraj Ha’abib, Flor de Primavera – Score: A- to A
The nose on this garnet to black colored wine is screaming with blackberry, cassis, black plum, chocolate, mocha, smoke, and sweet oak – what a nose! The mouth on this full bodied wine is layered with nice tannin, blackberry, cassis, raspberry, and plum. The mid palate flows off the mouth and is balanced with spicy oak, chocolate, cocoa, and tannin. The finish is super long with rich black fruit, chocolate, tobacco, and plum – a lovely wine indeed!

2005 Capcanes Peraj Ha’abib, Flor de Primavera (Magnum) – Score: A- to A
The nose on this black colored wine is exploding with rich black plum, cassis, blackberry, chocolate, sweet oak, and blueberry. The mouth on this massive full bodied wine is exploding with lovely rich and concentrated fruit, blueberry, layers of blackberry, cassis, and extracted oak flavors, and nice tannin. The mid palate flows off the mouth with oak, more lovely tannin, and black plum. The finish is long and extracted with tannin, blackberry, cassis, and chocolate finish.

2005 Yatir Red Blend (35% Merlot, 35% Shiraz, 15% Petite Verdot, and 15% Cabernet Franc) – Score: B+ to A-
The nose on this garnet colored wine is hot initially out of the bottle, along with ripe blackberry, candied raspberry, crushed herbs, and spicy oak. The mouth on this medium to full bodied wine is rich with candied cranberry, raspberry, mineral dirt, blackberry, and red fruit. The mid palate is balanced and packed with spicy oak, acid, and nice tannin. The finish is long with more nice tannin, spicy oak, candied red fruit, and plum.

2006 Yatir Cabernet Sauvignon (85% Cabernet Sauvignon and 15% Petite Verdot) – Score: A- to A
The nose on this dark garnet colored wine is massive and broad shouldered with red and black fruit, blackberry, cassis, raspberry, cranberry, sweet oak, chocolate, and sweet fig. The mouth on this massive wine is super extracted and full bodied with rich raspberry, blackberry, and candied cranberry. The mid palate flows off the mouth with more extraction, rich tannin, and oak. The finish is long and lovely with tannin, oak, blackberry, chocolate, and vanilla. Another blockbuster Cabernet from the Yatir Winery.

2005 Yatir Forest (77% Cabernet Sauvignon, 13% Petite Verdot, and 10% Merlot) – Score: A
The nose on this dark garnet to black colored wine is another massive and explosive success by the Yatir Winery. This wine does not have an oak abuse problem, instead it has a rather elegant nose with Blackberry, lovely oak, black plum, ripe fruit, and raspberry. The mouth on this full bodied wine is mouth coating with layers upon layers of blackberry, cranberry, cassis, and candied raspberry. The mid palate flows off the mouth with lovely tannin, oak, and bracing acid. The finish is long with rich black fruit, chocolate, licorice, anise, smoke, and tobacco.

2006 Yatir Forest (82% Cabernet Sauvignon and 18% Merlot) – Score: A-
The nose on this dark garnet colored wine is rich with blackberry, more red fruit than the 2005 vintage, raspberry, cherry, and sweet oak. The mouth on this full bodied wine is filled with candied raspberry, ripe raspberry, and cherry. The mid palate is balanced with oak, lovely and coating tannin, and acid. The finish is long and luxurious with chocolate and smoke.

2007 Carmel Mediterranean (37% Carignan, 26% Shiraz , 20% Petit Verdot and 15% Petite Sirah and 2% Viogner) – Score: A
This is another one of those wines (like the 2005 Yatir Forest) that is more elegant than it is massive or powerful, yet it still has lovely oak, tannin, and some extraction, a nice balancing act indeed.

The nose on this light garnet colored wine is lovely and accentuated by Smoky fumes, rich oak, raspberry, cranberry, blackberry, plum, cherry, and roasted herbs. The mouth on this full bodied wine is rich with ripe raspberry, blackberry, cherry, fig, and elegant tannin. The mid palate is rich with well handled oak, lovely tannin, and red fruit. The finish is long and elegant with rich, and ripe red fruit, smoky oak, roasted herbs, plum, and cherry.

2005 Zion Armon (65% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot and 5% Petit Syrah) – Score: B+ to A-
The nose on this dark garnet colored wine is hopping with ripe red fruit and some black fruit (more red than black), candied raspberry, blackberry, spicy notes, herbs, plum, smoke, and coffee. The mouth on this full bodied wine is rich and mouth coating with ripe red fruit and lovely tannin. The mid palate is oaky with coffee, balancing and bright acid, and nice tannin. The finish is super long with coffee, bright cherry, spice, oak, and nice coffee.

2004 Rashi Barolo – Score: B++
AHH!! This too is a maddening wine. Last year, we did not like it much, this year it was showing much better. Still it is a far lighter wine than a Barolo should be. There is no power or depth, but a nice wine all the same.

The nose on this vibrant Ruby colored wine is filled with spice, nutmeg, coffee, raspberry, and ripe cherry. This wine’s medium body sneaks up on you from out of nowhere, if you look solely at its color. The mouth on this medium bodied wine is extracted with charming almost sweet cherry, rich tannin, and raspberry. The mid palate is packed with bracing acid, spicy oak, and coffee. The finish is super long and further extracted with bright acidity, raspberry, cherry, along with nice tannin, all wrapped up in an extracted package. Again, this is a wine that truly does sneaks up on you if you look only at its color. Interesting indeed. I wonder what it will taste like this year.

2006 Castel Grand Vin – Score: A
I love this wine – it was one of the winners of the evening for sure, and one that all the people who were around me loved as well.

The nose on this massive dark garnet to black colored wine is packed and redolent with blackberry, roasted herbs, raspberry, spicy oak, plum, chocolate, and mineral. The mouth on this massive full bodied wine is mouth coating and rich with layer upon layer of rich and dense extracted black fruit, cassis, blackberry, plum, and cherry. The mid palate is balanced with oak, extracted tannin, and rich chocolate. The finish is long, extracted, awesome, and layered with black fruit, chocolate, rich plum, and almost sweet oak.

2006 Chateau Piada Sauternes – Score: B++ to A-
This was a great wine with nice botrytis, rich apricot, peach, guava, nice sweetness that is balanced nicely with citrus and acidity.

Posted on January 3, 2011, in Kosher Dessert Wine, Kosher Red Wine, Kosher White Wine, Wine, Wine Tasting and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. 4 Comments.

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