Yarden Syrah Galilee 2016, Golan Heights Winery, Israel

The Galilee (or Galil) is the most northern, and generally considered the best, appellation in Israel. The highest quality area within the appellation is the Golan Heights (or simply the Golan), the coldest region in Israel. The vineyards on this volcanic plateau rise from 400 meters (1,300 feet) above sea level to 1,200 meters (3,900 feet) and receive snowfall in the winter. The Golan Heights Winery is located in the town of Katzrin, in the central Golan. The cool climate, rocky volcanic soil and high altitude are ideal conditions for growing classic wine grape varieties. Yarden is the premier label and flagship brand of Golan Heights Winery. Each year the finest grapes from the best vineyards are reserved for Yarden wines. Yarden is the Hebrew for Jordan River, which bisects the Golan Heights from the Galilee. The label features a symbol of ancient Israel: an oil lamp decorated with mosaic tile. The Yarden Syrah features an aromatic mix of ripe cherry and blackberry fruit characters, along with complex notes of cedar, earth, tobacco, chocolate, smoke and aniseed. Exhibiting outstanding varietal character, this full-bodied Syrah is rich and satisfying. Though tempting to drink now, the Yarden Syrah will continue to improve in the bottle, and should remain in great drinking condition for a decade and beyond.