September 9, 2013

Golan Heights Headed for Banner Wine Year

GOLAN HEIGHTS — (Special to Kosher Today) — In the Golan Heights, the discussion is already focused on Rosh Hashanah 5745, a year from now. The Golan Heights winery’s harvest for next season has begun. “We waited for the perfect conditions and now, as we begin to gather the grapes, we have high expectations for a great yield,” said Victor Schoenfeld, Chief Winemaker. “This year we have had unusually stable weather. Because of this, we hope to have a slightly larger crop than usual and have cautiously high hopes for the quality of the grapes collected.”

The Israeli harvest season is very different to Europe’s, with Israel’s 14 to 16 week harvest being much longer than Europe’s 3 to 4 weeks. “When our daily checks and measurements indicate that the grapes in each vineyard are ready to be harvested, we begin our work in our laboratory,” Schoenfeld explained. “We make sure that the grapes demonstrate the perfect balance of sugar, (which turns into alcohol,) and acidity which will give the wine its freshness and vibrancy. We wait with trepidation, watching the lab results, hoping that we won’t miss the crucial harvesting point.” This year the winery is looking forward to harvesting some of the newest grape varietals which have been perfected over the past few years. “We found the perfect plot for growing two Portuguese varietals, the Touriga Nacional and Tinta Cao, and now produce the deliciously spicy Yarden 2T and the port-style Yarden T2,” said Schoenfeld. “When we succeed to produce such outstanding new wines from these new varietals, we once again push the boundaries of Israel’s wine making potential.”