Thursday, December 3, 2015

Winey Tasting Notes: Revisiting an amazing trip with Israel's Mediterranean Soul wine

Mediterranean Soul Dream White BlendThe Winey Hubby and I celebrated a major wedding anniversary this year - one that ended with 0. OK, it was 30 years (yes, as a matter of fact, I was 9 when we got married, thank you for asking). What to do to celebrate such a happy milestone?

We went to Israel.

Yup, this fall we joined a group of wonderful folks who made the journey to the Holy Land. And to answer everyone's first question to us: No, we didn't feel unsafe at all. Awed, overwhelmed and emotional, but never unsafe. Israel is a beautiful country - from the rolling hills and mountains and fields of Galilee to the narrow streets of old Jerusalem to the beaches of Tel Aviv to the desert of Masada and the lowest place on earth, The Dead Sea, Israel astounded us. And the scenery was almost the least of it all! The sheer history of the land is mind boggling. Really. I had to laugh once when our guide told us that one particular wall wasn't that had only been there for 500 years. Ha! Here in the US, 200 is pretty darn good. But in Israel, 500 is nothing. We walked on stone streets that had been in use for thousands of years. We walked on stones that Jesus had walked on. All in all, it was a very moving experience.

Galilee, Israel, Israeli wine
Sea of Galilee in background
And yes, Winey Friends, there was wine. Actually, Israel has a number of different wine regions. I loved the Galilee region, which is in the north and is pretty much a Mediterranean climate. Think cold and wet winter and warm and dry in the summer. In fact, if you drew a line of latitude across to Europe, you'd hit some of that continent's best vineyards.) The wine I'm going to review today comes from a sub-region of the Galilee, Golan Heights.
Galilee, Israel, Israeli wine
Olive trees

Actually, I didn't sip on this particular wine in Israel. We had some yummy wines over there - especially some great Cabernet Sauvignon blends. But buying wine and toting it around for 10 days and then packing it for the 20-ish hour journey home sounded a bit too daunting. So we drank as we went, enjoying wine with some very tasty Mediterranean foods. And when I got home, I found Mediterranean Soul Wines.

Galilee, Israel, Israeli wine
View of north shore of the
Sea of Galilee
Mediterranean Soul is a boutique winery in the Golan Heights. The first of their wines that I sipped was a white blend called Dream (2013, 13.5%, Israel). It's a blend of Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Viognier and Semillon. It's a translucent, pineapple yellow color with a nose of peach and kiwi. The flavors are tart green apple, lemon-lime and a hint of melon. It finishes tart and juicy, like a Sauvignon Blanc, but with the blend of the other wines, Dream doesn't feel as thin in the mouth. It's got a bit more heft to it. Overall, it's a refreshing, tart, sharp juicy wine.

I wouldn't call it a light wine - but it's not big and oakey either. I'd say that this wine was very reminiscent of our amazing time in the Galilee. It brings to mind fresh air, water, olive trees everywhere and herbs that grow like weeds in the Mediterranean climate.
Galilee, Israel, Israeli wine
OK, so yeah, I milked a goat
while dressed like...OK, a tourist,
I was a tourist!

Galilee, Israel, Israeli wine
Winey Couple, Galilee
Buy this wine (I found it locally here in Ohio for $10) if you want a citrusy-tart, flavorful white wine that stops just short of being buttery and big. Perfect for seafood, chicken and looking at a bazillion pictures from the trip of a lifetime.


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