Recently, I was able to try a very memorable kosher wine, Psagot 2013 Merlot. The wine is made from 100% merlot grapes from Israel and is aged for 13 months in French oak barrels. Grapes are harvested from a few vineyards in the Judean mountains, about 900 meters above sea level. I was extremely impressed with the style and overall texture of this wine, which was very fruit forward with notes of cherries and blackberries and full bodied with soft tannins and with a slightly spicy finish that is both smooth and long. Its overall taste and feel were extremely complex for its price point. (The Psagot 2013 Merlot is a very palatable wine and sells for about $25.00 to $30.00 in most wine retail stores in the U.S.)
The Psagot 2014 Merlot is a great gift idea for a host or hostess of a winter dinner party with a focal point of lamb, veal, or another red meat. A great benefit is that it is a kosher wine and can be enjoyed for Hanukkah, Passover, and other holidays, but it is also a great option for non-kosher meals as well. It would also be an excellent option for the upcoming Valentine holiday over some dark chocolates.
Upon opening, the wine needs some time to breathe but then opens up beautifully. The alcohol content of the 2014 vintage is 14.5% alcohol by volume.
From the Winery Psagot
Psagot Merlot is a rich wine, characterized by a tight body and an acidic backbone. This wine features aromas of red forest fruit, red plum, red and black cherry, and a touch of green. An elegant wine with a unique, distinctly Israeli flavor profile that pairs well with meat dishes.This wine is expected to age well.