My first experience with the 2015 “Vare Vineyard” and the first of my three allocated bottles. Ketan mentioned this was his best “Vare” bottling to-date and while I can’t speak to that (since all of my previous experiences with Beta have been the Montecillo Vineyard in Sonoma), I can verify that it has Ketan’s signature all over it. I did not decant this bottle though, it probably would have benefited from it. Never the less, the bouquet was bursting with character: predominately black fruits, anise, eucalyptus, coniferous forest floor, Anaheim pepper…the overwhelming message of freshness and one of the most unique noses I’ve ever encountered from a Napa Cabernet Sauvignon. On the palate, things were a little more subdued with black currants, tart black cherry and black bramble fruit with a little hint of baking spices. It seemed a touch green, to be completely honest. Bone dry and endowed with substantial structure; medium+ tannin, medium+ acid, all the while framed by a medium- body; a welter weight of a wine.
This seems right in-line with what I have come to expect from Ketan Mody’s approach and, while I don’t expect anyone to peg this as Bordeaux in a blind tasting, it certainly has some Old World sensibilities and reminds me of the way Cabernet Sauvignon was made in California 40+ years ago. And, after drinking a few 40 year old Napa Cabernet’s this past week plus the aforementioned balance of fruit/structure, I believe this has a long life ahead of it with a rather exciting upside. Drink with patience or cellar. FWIW, I don’t have any immediate plans to open my second bottle before 2025. — 3 months ago
terrible days in Israel.
an Israeli off dry riesling and that's a change.
medium to full body.
white flowers, lemon rind and leaves, lime, peach, green apple peel and hints of ginger.
on it's own sweetness is hinted.
combined with not too spicy indian style veggie take away it felt much sweeter and lifted the cuisine.
very interesting. feels like a good but not great kabinett german Riesling.
great vfm @ 80 nis. — 2 months ago
Popped and poured; consumed over two days. Pours a bright golden color. On the nose, this is quite restrained. Notes of tropical fruit and honey but seems somewhat reticent. On the palate, this is fresh and rather elegant. Lemon curd and tropical fruit. Very nicely balanced with good acid. The vines for this wine were 45 years old; dry-farmed and head-trained. The wine saw large format new oak. This is a restrained Chardonnay that is a very nice change of pace while remaining true to its varietal character; a one-off as the Chuy Vineyard was ripped out at the end of the 2018 harvest. I won’t be touching another bottle until 2025 as I believe the best is yet to come. — 7 months ago
Pregame. Congrats to Beta Wines on a successful first release this morning. — 3 years ago
(French) colombard used to be the most planted white variety in Israel. used as the white blend workhorse. lost it's popularity a few decades ago and now being used again.
most winemakers consider it a fresh not to be aged crisp week day quality sipper.
this is my second try, the other one was ok-ish.
apricot, peach, grated 🍋peel and a hint of nuttines. maybe a guava slight memory.
balanced and interesting.
medium + 🎯
had it on it's own by the pool while vacationing in the dead sea desert area.
lovely sipper and great vfm (79 nis) — 3 months ago
This is my first go with the 2014 Montecillo. Based off my experience with the 2013 vintage, I opened this bottle seven hours ahead of time, well in advance of our dinner. I poured a small taste and the wine seemed to have quite a bit of vigor with noticeable, but not obnoxious, volatile acidity so I poured the rest through a Soirée and into a ship’s decanter to breath. Eight hours later, the VA was still present but integrated. One thing is for sure, this wine is unique. Unusual notes of Middle Eastern spiced meat, herbs de Provence, orange zest, and eucalyptus. Not exactly what I would normally expect from Cabernet Sauvignon and yet, this is utterly satisfying. This is a high acid wine and the tannins are mostly imperceptible which makes this bottle quite a bit different from the 2013 version which is a bit of a beast. The 2014 Montecillo is about as fresh as they come out of California these days and the finish is long. The acid leads me to believe it will cellar a long time but it’s hard to say how beneficial that would be. One thing is for certain, these wines from Ketan Mody are wholly unique and probably won’t be for everyone…but I love them. I’m hoping the Jasud Estate can bounce back from the fires of 2020. — 7 months ago