Established in 1993 by the late Ronnie James, the Tzora winery, situated on the slopes of the Samson Mountain (Kibbutz Tzora), is one of the only Israeli wineries which truly emphasizes the importance of the terroir as opposed the specific grape variety or the winemaker. According to Roni's philosophy the quality and characteristics of the wine are derived directly from the terroir of the vineyard.
To those who aren’t familiar with this French term, the word terroir refers to the combination of the micro-climate, soil type, topography and other factors that influence the vine, grapes and consequently impact the wine as well.
Today, with the young and talented Eran Pik serving as head winemaker, the Tzora winery continues with Roni's approach, naming their wines according to the specific vineyard or plot, rather than referring to the grape varieties used to produce the wine.
Recently, the Tzora Vineyard invited guests to a launching of 2 new red wines from the 2006 vintage. As the winery recently completed the renovations at their new visiting center, I decided that this launch was one party I couldn't miss.
Upon arrival we were greeted with a smile by one of the winery’s employees and a chilled glass of the 2007 Rose. It is hard to say that this was an exciting wine, but on a warm Friday afternoon, this light and refreshing glass was well appreciated.
From there we decided to head inside for the main event, a tasting of two single vineyard red wines, Shoresh 2006 and Neve Ilan 2006.
Shoresh 2006, is produced using 100% Cabernet Sauvignon grapes. Medium to full bodied, the wine offers various black fruit and herbal aromas, followed by a touch of wood, earth and pepper. In my opinion, this red is not yet at its peak and would benefit from moderate cellaring.
Although I preferred the Shoresh, I found the Neve Ilan 2006 more approachable (at least in its present state). A blend of 70% Cabernet and 30% Merlot, this red gives off an array of raspberry and blackberry aromas along with hints of spice and oak.
For further information about the vineyard and the various activities, please visit their website.
D.N. Shimshon 99803