Tasting of Royal’s 2016 French wines in France

All 16 of the 2016 and 2017 Royal Wines of Bordeuax - sideways view

As I stated recently in my original post about my most recent trip to Israel, the reds of Israel are really not impressive, but thankfully I ended my trip by going to France to meet with Menahem Israelievitch and taste through all of Royal’s new 2016 and 2017 wines from France in Paris.

2016 Royal Europe French wines

Two years ago, I was given the opportunity to taste many of these wines from the barrel at each of the wineries in Bordeaux. Now, the 2015 wines were a bit more akin to the barrel notes when I tasted through the 2015 wines last year in Paris, but the 2015 wines were already in barrel for a year. However, since the trip was in 2016, the 2016 wines were barely finished fermenting and most had yet to even go through malo, but man even then it was easy to tell that the 2016 vintage was going to be something very special.

The 2014 vintage to me, was crazy fun because it is less ripe than the 2015 or 2016 vintages. They are also FAR cheaper. Then you had the 2015 wines which are more expensive and far riper than the 2014 vintage. This 2016 vintage is the best of both worlds, but it comes at a crazy high price. I warned you during the epic post of my visit to Bordeaux with Mr. Israelievitch, that you better start saving your money, sadly nothing has changed about that. The REAL shocker of the 2016 vintage will be the Chateau Malartic wine, get ready to see that at 170 or more a bottle! That will be close to double the 2014 vintage.

In a previous post about the most recent French wines that were arriving on the market – I already spoke about pricing and supply, so there is no need to talk that over again in this post.

Also, the 2015 vintage may have been ripe to many, but the 2016 right bank wines are even riper. That appears in the right bank because of the Merlot that was super ripe in 2016, but other wines with lots of Merlot also show that way, even on the left bank.

The interesting change this year for these wines is that more of them will be coming to the USA in Mevushal format. Will that be an issue? In the past, I have found that the mevushal work of Mr. Israelievitch is top-notch, and really just ages the wine rather than ruining it.

The Mevushal wines from France for the 2016 vintage will be, the 2016 Barons Edmond et Benjamin de Rothschild, Haut-Medoc, 2017 Chateau Mayne Guyon, 2016 Chateau Greysac, 2016 Chateau 2016 Chateau de Parsac, 2016 Les Lauriers, Des Domaines Edmond de Rothschild, along with the two whites wines, the 2017 Bourgogne Les Truffieres, Chardonnay and the 2017 Les Marronniers, Chablis.

All 16 of the 2016 and 2017 Royal Wines of Bordeuax

Now does mevushal impede the long-term viability of aging in regards to the wine? Well, that too is not something that we have scientific proof on. I have tasted a mevushal 1999 Herzog Special Edition and it was aging beautifully! So, would I buy the mevushal versions of the wines I tasted below – absolutely! Would I age them? Yes, I would hold them for slightly fewer years. The only wine listed below that will be mevushal in the USA and that is NOT mevushal in France is the 2016 Chateau Le Crock. I will post my notes on the mevushal version when it is released here in the USA, they are currently selling the 2015 Chateau Le Crock, so that needs to sell out before the 2016 vintage is released.

Other than the mevushal aspect, there are no differences between the European version of the wines and the USA version of the wines. While that sounds obvious, I am just stating it here. The wines will be shipped now and the temperature issues that clearly affected Israel’s wines of old, have not been a factor here.

Tasting in Paris

I landed in Paris, got showered and the such, and then made my way to lunch with Menahem Israelievitch. After lunch, we went to a lovely home to do the tasting. The wines were all laid out in the order for the tasting, and one by one we went through the 29 wines. The only wine missing wines were the 2016 Les Lauriers, Des Domaines Edmond de Rothschild and the 2016 Chateau Greysac.

My many thanks to Menahem Israelievitch for going out of his way to help me to taste all the current French wines from Royal Wines before they were publicly released. The labels on the pictures may not all have a kosher symbol, but that was because they rushed some of the bottles to Mr. Israelievitch before they were properly labeled with supervision symbols attached. My many thanks to Mr. Israelievitch, Royal Europe, and Royal Wines for making this tasting possible in the first place, and secondly, for making the time to taste the wines with me.

The wine notes follow below – the explanation of my “scores” can be found here:

2017 Ramon Cardova Albarino, Rias Baixas – Score: 91
Lovely nose of rich mineral, with loads of straw, with which salinity, and lovely peach and dry apricot, with honeysuckle, lemongrass, with green notes galore. Lovely! The mouth on this lovely green and acid-driven wine, showing rich salinity, green olives, with lovely dry quince, green apples, but also with lovely lime and grapefruit, with a bit of sweet fruit of guava and rich acid that comes at you in layers. The finish is long and green, with gooseberry, passion fruit, and lovely round and tart with freshness and orange pith, and incredible acidity lingering long. Drink until 2021.

Interesting note on this wine, there is a thermosensitive logo on the label that shows ONLY when the wine is at the correct temperature, on the bottom right-hand corner of the front white label. This is a lovely wine and one that is worth the effort to enjoy at the correct temp. Cool!

2017 Chateau Lacaussade Saint Martin, Vignes Vignes – Score: 90
The wine is a blend of Semillon and Sauvignon Blanc. This wine is very slow to open, it may need a quick decanting, for an hour or so. The nose is slightly tropical in nature with lovely with melon, guava, and hints of passion fruit to start, over time it recedes to show lemongrass, straw, mineral, grapefruit, citrus, and honeysuckle notes. Just like the nose the mouth also starts off with crazy tropical notes that also recede with time, to show a very different wine. After some time, the mouth on this wine is not complex, but very nice, with rich acidity, showing a good balance of fruit, green apple, heather, tart pear, and mineral. The finish is long, super long, with southern tea, and rich acidity, and lovely pith. Drink until 2021.

2017 Bourgogne Chardonnay, Les Truffieres – Score: 88 (mevushal)
Very little to no additives with just Oak and not much else. A lovely nose of apples and dry quince with nice minerality, showing earth, and green fruit. The mouth is nice showing very good acid, showing a nice fruit focus and a nice roundness to the palate but balanced with great acid mineral pith, hints of tannin and rich green Apple and yellow pear. The finish is long, green with lovely foliage, earth, and pith. Nice. Drink by 2020.

2017 Les Marronniers Chablis – Score: 91 to 92 (mevushal) (QPR)
The nose is lovely, this is the second vintage and really lovely. The nose is not marred with Oak or yeast, all natural. The nose is tart and lovely, not round, bright and rich, with peach, apricot, and lovely tart and dry quince. The mouth is not round and filled with good tension and fruit focus with great mineral focus and rich salinity that gives way to great acid and layers of lovely green and yellow apples that are layered in lemongrass and foliage and mineral. The finish is long and tart filled with crazy acid, hints of smoke and flint and loads of mineral and rock. Bravo! Drink until 2023.

2017 Bourgogne Les Brulis Pinot Noir – Score: 86
Lovely Smokey nose, all the same, natural leanings as the chardonnay without any Oak. Lots of smoke with green notes, really simple yet nice, showing cherry and raspberry with Montreal and dirt galore. The mouth is more round that I had hoped with nice mineral and red fruit, along with cranberry and hints of pomegranate, with hints of forest floor and more smoke that gives way to graphite and earth. The finish is long and salty with nice tart fruit and nice tannin that lift the wine. A very nice all around pinot. Drink until 2020.

2017 Chateau Mayne Guyon – Score: 90 (mevushal) (QPR)
This wine is a classically styled Blaye wine, not a wine that will blow you over, but nicer than I first thought when I tasted it last, and mevushal. However, I must say, that the boring and simple Blaye wine really turns into a nice wine with a day or air, impressive.
The nose on this wine is red, with a bit of earth, dirt, tons of smoke, tar, and fruit. The mouth on this medium bodied wine is nice, it has great acid, tighter fruit than my last tasting, mostly red with raspberry, dark cherry, and hints of dark plum, with very nice earth, some mineral, a bit of saline, and loads of green fruit and notes, with nice mouth-drying tannin, and tobacco. The finish is long, green, with enough red fruit, earth, hints of mushroom, herb, mint, and Oregeno, with pencil shavings, and tart fruit. Nice!
With time, the wine changes to a more polished wine, with rich fruit on the nose and mouth. The wine never goes truly complex, but it adds layers of fruit, it adds a more polished and plush mouthfeel, and it rounds out the short finish and clunkiness that it shows at the start. If you must enjoy it now, please decant for a few hours. Drink from 2020 until 2023.

2016 Chateau de Parsac, Montagne Saint-Emilion – Score: 90 (mevushal) (QPR)
The nose is really precise and screaming with more precision, showing bright fruit, and loads of blackberry, tar, smoke, followed by red fruit, and earth, with roasted herb. The mouth on this wine needs time if you must drink this now, open it in advance by two hours, with time the mouth opens and the middle fills out to show a quality wine, a true QPR, with lovely saline, black olives, followed by nice mouth-coating tannin, not overly complex, but for the value it is crazy good, showing nice tart cherry, raspberry, and more blackberry, with mineral, graphite, and loads of herb. The finish is long and green, with great acidity, and tobacco, followed by earth, olives, linger long. Drink until 2025.

2016 Chateau Larcis Jaumat, Saint-Emilion Grand Cru – Score: 92 (Crazy QPR)
This wine starts off open and then closes so tight like an oil drum, this thing is nuts. The wine is made of 90% Merlot and 10% Cabernet Franc, a classic right bank wine from Saint-Emilion. The nose on this wine is really bright, ripe, and intense, with rich intensity, mushroom, earth, but so much redolence, the nose is far more open than the mouth, showing rich blackberry, dark plum, and rich vanilla, followed by herb, mint, rosemary, and green notes galore. The mouth on this medium to full-bodied wine is crazy rich, it does at times remind me of Benyo’s Merlots with a fair amount of blackcurrant thrown in, which is never found on Benyo wines, but the mad acid, rich mouthfeel, closed tight fruit structure has me reminded often of a Four Gates wine, with intense notes, they scream because of the acid, that gives way to rich tannin structure that is searing and yet inviting, with rich cranberry, cherry, and crazy earth, that will give way to mushroom and forest floor with time. The finish is long, really long, lingering, and intense, with gripping tannin, acid, tobacco galore, mounds of blackcurrant, vanilla, herb, foliage, and green notes, that give way to a gripping mouthfeel that will crush anything, with tar, menthol, and more earth. OMG, this Benyo in France! Wow!! Drink from 2021 to 2030.

2016 Les Roches de Yon-Figeac, Saint-Emilion Grand Cru – Score: 92 to 93 (QPR)
Lovely nose, really rich with salinity, unique, and loads of roasted herb, followed by tar, and lovely smoke with blackcurrant, and spice. The mouth on this medium bodied wine is rich and layered, with classic stylings, showing loads of oregano, cloves, and tobacco, followed by layers of cranberry, blackberry, dried plum, and rich spices, all wrapped in rich herbal structure and mouth-drying tannin that gives the wine a lovely fruit focus and rich acidity and lovely olives. The finish is long and tart and rich, with acid, tannin, and crazy salinity lingering long, with loads of herb, leather, tobacco, and spice. Bravo!! Drink from 2022 till 2030.

2016 Chateau Royaumont, Lalande de Pomerol – Score: 90
This wine is a blend of 80% Merlot and 20% Cabernet Franc. The nose on this wine is ripe, more than in 2015, with loads of dark plum, dark cherry, with herb, and hints of even darker fruit. The mouth on this full-bodied wine is candied in nature with a massive assault of dark fruit, with hints of blueberry, pomegranate, along with mounds of dark chocolate and sweet oak, that give way to mouthcoating tannin and rich mineral, graphite, stone, and black olives, that help to balance the richness and fat of this young wine. The finish is long, and very tannic, with loads of herb, tobacco, and smoke that melds with olives, and great acid structure. Drink from 2020 till 2028.

2016 Chateau Montviel, Pomerol – Score: 93 to 94
The nose on this wine is lovely, red, with hints of black, far more controlled than the Royaumont, and wow this wine is what shows the potential of 2016. This wine is a blend of 80% Merlot and 20% Cabernet Franc.
The nose on this wine is crazy with rich green and red fruit, not overripe, nicely controlled, with green notes galore, raspberry, dark cherry, mint, and sweet herb. The mouth on this medium to full-bodied wine has rich layers of concentration and rich lovely extraction, with mineral madness and mouth coating tannin that is incredible, with foliage, mushroom, loads of saline, green olives, and lovely mint with menthol and tobacco galore. The finish is long and green and rich with rich herb, lovely pencil shavings, graphite, mineral, with tobacco and chocolate and sweet dill that lingers with mineral and tannin that still needs many years to integrate. Bravo. 2024 to 2032

2016 Barons Edmund Benjamin de Rothschild, Haut-Medoc – Score: 91 to 92 (mevushal)
This is the first vintage with a new consultant team, Eric Boisssenot. This vintage is the 30th anniversary of this wine being made by Royal in conjunction with Barons de Rothschild. This wine is a blend of 60% Merlot and 40% Cabernet Sauvignon. The nose is bright and dark, with brooding dark fruit, backed by tart red fruit, very professional in nature and stylistic of the 2016 vintage. The mouth on this full-bodied wine is lovely, well made, round, and yet complex, with layers of blackberry, dark plum, tart raspberry, with searing mouth-drying tannin, and still plush in the mouth, with a great balance of acid and tannin, with dark fruit, and earth and loam galore. The finish is long and tart and a mineral monster, with loads of black olives, nice control of foliage, tobacco, and rich salinity, with graphite, pencil shavings, and lovely dirt, and hints of forest floor. Bravo! This may be the best Rothschild since the 2010 vintage. Drink from 2020 till 2027.

2016 Chateau Malmaison, Moulis en Medoc – Score: 92
The nose on this wine is lovely, showing ripe notes, with ripe black and red fruit, showing balance with green notes, loads of roasted herb, and lovely mineral, and smoke. The mouth on this full-bodied wine is layered and richly extracted, with rich mineral focus, showing lovely concentration yet impressive control and balance, followed by layers of elegant and mouth-draping tannin, with more black olives, and nice green notes, with blackberry, hints of blueberry, red plum, and lovely tilled earth, and forest floor. The finish is long, elegant, and green, with loads of roasted herb, olives, graphite, and rich salinity that balances the wine beautifully. Drink from 2022 till 2029.

2016 Chateau Clarke, Baron Edmund de Rothschild, Listrac-Medoc – Score: 92 to 93
This was also done with the new consultant team, Eric Boisssenot. Yeah, this wine is ripe. I saw this wine first in October 2016 when they were putting together the first of many blending trials. This wine is ripe, but it is also a Merlot-driven wine, made of 70% Merlot and 30% Cabernet, and Merlot comes in at higher alcohol, normally in Bordeaux.
The nose on this wine is ripe, controlled, but ripe, with clear leanings of blueberry, blackberry, ripe and juicy plum, with mineral galore, earth, and forest floor. The mouth on this full bodied wine, is a mineral bomb, with masses of tobacco, sweet dill, anise, sweet oak, but in the background is a core of acid, and incredible mineral, graphite, pencil, and intense layers of concentration that are like waves of sweet and ripe blue, black and red fruit, with mounds of blueberry, that is both tart and juicy fruit, with rich extraction, creamy notes, but what really grabs you is the wine’s seductiveness, it is sexy, polished, and refined, with a plush mouthfeel, truly a very professionally made wine. The finish is long, and while it is shockingly accessible now, this will last long. The finish lingers long with mad Tobacco, dark chocolate, leather, black olives, and tannin that really never leaves. Impressive. Drink from 2022 – 2032.

2016 Pavillon de Leoville Poyferre, Saint-Julien – Score: 92 to 93
This wine is the greenest and red wine of the tasting to start, showing impressive control along with loads of fruit, earth, green notes, herb galore, foliage, and spice, with time the wine changes totally, with rich blueberry, blackberry, and dark cherry, with loads of earth, and loam. The mouth on this medium to full-bodied wine is impressive, rich, layered, and concentrated, yet in total control, with great finesse, rich acidity, lovely tobacco madness, and a tactile and mouth-drying mouthfeel that makes you stand up and take notice, with more black and blue fruit, followed by the red fruit of the nose, with dark cherry, dried currant, and roasted herb, followed by rich salinity, The finish is long, green with loads of foliage, herbal, and backed by leather, lemongrass, and rich coffee. Bravo!! This may well be the best Pavillion ever. Drink from 2022 till 2031.

2016 Chateau Saint-Corbian, Saint-Estephe – Score: 91
This wine is a blend of something like 50/50 Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. The nose on this wine is screaming blackcurrant, with rich black fruit, loads of roasted herb, licorice galore, with dark chocolate, and mounds of loamy dirt. The mouth on this medium bodied wine is nice, with good extraction, showing rich fruit, more dark raspberry, rich earth, cranberry, more blackcurrant, followed by crazy roasted herb, oregano, rosemary, and dried mint, with nice cloves and salinity. The finish is long and simple with good herb, spice, and currant lingering long with saline and tobacco. Nice. Drink from 2020 to 2024.

2016 Chateau Le Crock, Saint-Estephe – Score: 93  (NOT mevushal)
I tasted the NON-mevushal European bottle, the wine in the USA is mevushal. This wine is a blend of 64% Cabernet Sauvignon, 30% Merlot, and 6% Cabernet Franc. This is a lovely nose of blueberry, and loads of red fruit, with a bit of blackberry, with lovely grass, licorice, and loads of herb. The mouth on this full-bodied wine is lovely, truly the best Chateau Le Crock, that I have tasted, The mouth is rich, layered, extracted, and intense, and truly insane, truly bonkers, it has it all, concentration, finesse, extraction, while being plush, and truly tannic with mouth-drying tannin, showing impressive control and richness, with more blackberry, blueberry, lovely dark juicy raspberry, and tart fruit all over. The finish is long, with crazy acidity, leather, foliage, loam, forest floor, and massive tobacco, all wrapped in loads of roasted herb that lingers long and forever. Bravo!!! This is the best Chateau Le Crock, I have ever tasted! Drink from 2022 until 2031.

2016 Chateau Du Tertre, Margaux, Grand Clu Classe – Score: 93 to 94
This wine is a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, and Petit Verdot. This wine is not the same old same old Margaux, it is really a unique one, with crazy smoke, tar, and blue fruit that is ripe but super controlled with lovely red fruit, herbs, and crazy foliage that gives way to dirt, and more smoke. The mouth on this full-bodied wine is crazy, finesse and elegance, with loads of blueberry, cassis, raspberry, all wrapped together with green notes, massive extraction, and rich salinity, that gives way to layers of extraction and concentrated fruit, that is both juicy and tart, with foliage, showing lovely foliage, with more turned loam, earth, and cigar tobacco. The finish is long, green, herbal, and smoky, with more leather and spice. Bravo!!! Drink from 2023 till 2032.

2016 Chateau Giscours, Margaux, Grand Clu Classe – Score: 93 to 94
The nose on this wine is crazy blue and black, with loads of blackberry, dark plum, and herb galore, with licorice, and mineral. The mouth on this full-bodied Margaux is lovely, rich, layered, and controlled, better than the 2015 vintage, with rich fruit, showing layers of fruit, earth, lovely control, and impressive tart fruit, showing chocolate, coffee, and earth that gives way to mushroom, spice, layers of concentrated fruit, all wrapped in incredible elegance and control, showing layers of dark and red fruit, raspberry, blackberry, blueberry, and incredible mouth-coating tannin, with earth, mushroom, and forest floor, with foliage, and licorice. The finish is long, green, herbal, with tobacco, showing leather, and mint. Bravo!! Drink from 2022 until 2032.

2016 Chateau Lascombes, Margaux, Grand Cru Classe – Score: 94
The 2016 vintage continues the soy sauce madness of the 2015 vintage, with more power, loads of umami, with salinity galore, with blue fruit, and rich herb, with coffee, and spice. The mouth on this full-bodied wine is a powerhouse, showing incredible control, unbelievable, with rich saline, layers upon layers of concentrated blueberry, blackberry, dark cherry, and red currant, that give way to earth, spice, green notes galore, with chocolate, and deep concentration and depth. The finish is long with layers of mouth-draping tannin, rich earth, and chocolate, with mushroom, forest floor, foliage, cigar, and sweet dill lingering long. Bravo!!! Drink from 2021 until 2032. Bravo!!!!

2016 Chateau Malartic Lagraviere, Pessac-Leognan, Grand Cru Classe – Score: 94
The 2016 Malartic-Lagraviere is a blend of 53% Cabernet Sauvignon, 40% Merlot, 4% Cabernet Franc and 3% Petit Verdot (at least in the non-kosher version). Wow, the nose is really ripe, not what I expect from a Malartic, but still lovely, with chocolate, black fruit, earth, and lovely hints of umami, with sweet oak, earth, and sweet blue fruit. The mouth on this full bodied wine is rich, layered, and concentrated with nice control, expressive, with blackberry, blueberry, and what a change, Malartic with blueberry! Showing more raspberry, earth, and rich fruit, with a truly incredible plushness, that gives way to a rich mouth coating tannin that drapes and lifts the mouth, showing a precision, and an incredible professional touch, with plush fruit, loam, and lovely saline. The finish is long, and plush, with more blue, green, and red fruit, with leather, and power that belies its youth, a wine that will push long into its life, with tannin, licorice, and graphite/mineral that lingers long, Bravo!! Drink from 2025 until 2035.

——————- The Spanish wines were all tasted blind ———————————-

2016 Ramon Cardova Rioja, Old Vines, Limited Edition – Score: 90
This is the first ever special edition for the Ramon Cardova wines. The nose on this wine starts with just blue fruit and lovely roasted animal, after time, the wine turns to crazy umami, with rich salinity, and mad soy sauce, followed by incredible boysenberry, juicy blueberry, and mad dark fruit. The mouth on this rich full-bodied wine is layered and rich, with mad dark fruit that is pushed a bit for me, showing hints of a fruit bomb with a candied fig, and candied cranberry that gives way to blackberry, and layers of concentrated fruit. The finish is long and sweet, with really ripe fruit, loads of terroir, dirt, loam, and tar, that has potential, with crazy leather and cigar smoke, but now it needs to sleep before I can enjoy. Drink from 2020 till 2025

2014 Ramon Cardova Rioja Crianza – Score: 90 (mevushal) (QPR)
Lovely nose of ripe fruit, with raspberry, dirt, earth, and rich chocolate, that gives way to blue fruit, and lovely dirt. The mouth on this medium bodied wine is refined and nice, showing good control, nice expression, and fruit focus, with nice extraction, good dirt, that gives way to more dark chocolate, with green notes, foliage, and raspberry, with dark plum, and mushroom, and nice mouth-drying tannin. The finish is long, green, and herbal, with more mushroom, fruit, and spice, cloves, and cinnamon, that gives way to coffee, and spice. Nice!

2012 Ramon Cardova Rioja Crianza – Score: 89 to 90 (mevushal)
This wine shows like a tar bomb, with rich salinity, lovely licorice, showing hints of blue fruit, with blackberry, and red fruit galore. The mouth on this medium bodied wine is nice, controlled, and rich, with good smoke, herb, and tar, that gives way to lovely mouth coating tannin, that is impressive for its control, with blueberry and raspberry coming together, with dark chocolate, and tobacco, that is lovely. The finish is long and sweet, sweeter than #3, with boysenberry, cranberry, and lovely sweet spices.

2002 Ramon Cardova Rioja Crianza – Score: NA

2016 Ramon Cardova Rioja, Classic – Score: 90 (mevushal) (QPR)
This wine is closed, really hard to pick out the notes, with nice red and black fruit, showing a rich wine that is lovely. The mouth on this medium bodied wine is nice, elegant, showing good control, with green and red fruit, with cranberry, earth, loam, and lovely mouth coating tannin, with foliage galore, and lovely mushroom that gives way to loam, tobacco, and roasted herb. The finish is long, green, and lovely, with chocolate, leather, and loads of herb, with hints of cranberry, and lovely spice. Bravo!

——————- end of blind tasting ————————–

Drappier Brut Nature, Zero Dosage – Score: 92 to 93 (Mevushal) (QPR)
This is the second wine being released with what is called Zero or Nature dosage. Meaning that at the time of bottling most Champagne adds a bit of sweetness to the wines to balance out the extreme tartness of Champagne’s base wine. However, recently the market has clamored for more acid, more tart fruit, and with that demand comes Zero Dosage Sparkling wines. This wine has 2G of RS (Residual Sugar), and it makes for a truly enjoyable experience. Think of this as the Big Boy’s pants of kosher Champagnes out there right now! Also, Drappier has dropped their Brut Blanche, so to me, this is the GO TO Champagne on the market right now! WOW! This wine is made from 100% Pinot Noir Blanc de Noir (meaning the juice of the Pinot Noir crushed and pressed like a white wine and the wine that come from it is white/clear-ish)
This wine shows so much better, in comparison to the Bonet Ponson Zero (the other Zero dosage on the market), which while nice, tastes old already.
The nose is very much like the normal Drappier, with rich dry quince, rich mineral, with dried grapefruit, intense yeast, with brioche, and green Apple. The mouth on this wine is different, very different, and crazy, with a very effervescent mousse, showing a crazy attack of small mousse bubbles, with rich tart fruit, slate and lovely pith, with layers upon layers of Apple, citrus, gooseberry, with rich tart summer fruit that gives way to the mousse attack, followed by lovely notes with rich brioche and almost key-lime pie. The wine is so fresh, young, tart, and super refreshing, WOW! The finish is long and green, with more mineral, yeast, and tart notes, making for a super refreshing finish. Bravo!! Drink from now till 2023.

Drappier Cote d’Or – Score: 89 (mevushal)
The nose here is slightly more sweet, with lovely guava, and hints of sweet quince, and sweet orange, with hints of red fruit, that gives way to yellow apple, and yeast galore! The mouth on this starts off with a rich attack of medium mousse bubbles, with lovely orange and nectarine hints that give way to fruity notes and Asian pear, that is balanced, but sadly, the finish is a bit short. Nice.

2016 Chateau Piada Sauternes – Score: 91 (tasted at home as well)
This wine is not as good as the epic 2013 Piada, and 2016 was a not so great year for Sauternes, though it was a wonderful year for red Bordeaux wines.
The wine needs time to open, it is really not ready yet, and I think it will need many more years before it is enjoyable from opening.
To start the nose is flat and the wine is hollow, again the wine needs a day, for me anyway, to really come around. After that, the nose on this wine is lovely, it pops with rich honeysuckle, orange blossom, honeyed peach, apricot, and lovely smoke, with Creme Fraiche. The mouth on this medium bodied wine is nice, it is rich, oily, and layered, but it is missing that kick of rich acid to bring this all together, with lovely mouth coating mouthfeel of sweet fruit, lots of tropical fruit, from mango to pineapple, all wrapped in layers of rich vanilla, and though it lacks the acid, there are a few ribbons of bitter mineral and graphite that helps bring it together. The wine is nice, and enjoyable after a day or so now, but it will improve with time. Drink from 2022 to 2033.

Posted on December 14, 2018, in Kosher French Wine, Kosher Red Wine, Kosher Sparkling Wine, Kosher White Wine, Wine, Wine Tasting and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 17 Comments.

  1. You wrote a post about how much you hated Israeli reds and then followed it up with a bunch of posts about Israeli winery visits highliting some great wines. There is no such thing as an “Israeli Red” category. Most are not great, as most red wines from every part of the world , but some recent releases are excellent and compare favorable to the best Kosher wines out there. The winemaking overall has improved on the high end over the past few years. The beauty of wine is that just because you write it, doesn’t make it fact. Discerning wine drinkers can decide by themselves. As a final though, if you failed to visit Gvaot, you are simply not capable of discussing “Israeli Reds״ with any authority. Their current releases, including a $35 Merlot , every Gofna, and an interesting but young Masada are superb.

    • Hello Sir,

      First of all, thank you for reading the post and for replying here. If you read my posts, you would see I gave those wine scores below a 90, which if you read my scoring rules, are wines I would not buy. The wines I did like were white wines, which as I said in the original post are OK. My hope is that one day Israel will create wines I would buy, until then, I will stick with other options.

      • Thank you for replying. Castigating all “Israeli Reds” still seems extreme to me. We can agree to disagree and drink what we like. May favorite part of wine !

  2. Thanks for the wealth of information!
    Will there be a 2016 Fourcas Dupre?
    How is it?

  3. Thanks for your posts! Do you know if these wines are sold in Israel and if so, where they can be purchased?

  4. Thanks for your posts! Do you know if these wines are available for purchase in Israel, and if so, where?

    • Well, Tzur has been doing a better job at bringing in some of the French wines. The majority of them will be far easier to buy in the USA or in France. I have seen the 2015 Rothschild Haut Medoc there in Jerusalem, but I do not remember much else. Many of the wines I tasted will not be for sale yet, while some are for sale already on kosherwine.com and onlinekosherwine.com

    • Alexandre, a friend of mine who lives in Patel said that: we have Chateau Leoville, MR (Moulin riche), and Pavillon (14 so far), Lascombes and Chevalier, Malartic, Giscours, Yon Figeac, Fourcas, Royaumont (2014), Greysac (2013) , Riganes and Maronniers

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