Israel’s Yatir Forest, located on the southern slopes of Mount Hebron at the edge of the Negev desert, is the namesake of Yatir’s flagship wine. The forest is the largest planted forest in Israel containing pine, cypress, olive, carob, fig, eucalyptus and acacia trees – and, of course, vineyards. The forest is relatively high, located at about 2800ft above sea level, gets plenty of sun, cools at night year round, and gets snowfall in the winter; these are ideal conditions for growing red grapes. There are four vineyards in the forest, all managed by Yatir. The vines all have naturally low yields due to well drained soil, which helps Yatir produce high quality wine. For the 2005 vintage of Yatir Forest the grapes were individually harvested at night, processed at the winery in Tel Arad, aged for 14 months in 1/3 new French oak, and then blended to make this outstanding wine.
In the glass, the wine is a beautiful deep purple with somewhat of an inky consistency. Surprisingly, the wine took about 3-4 hours to fully open, but when it did…wow! On the nose and palate, a copious amount of black fruit on a backdrop of tobacco, spice, smoke, and well integrated oak. The body is full with lush tannins and bright acidity. The finish is very long with a note of sweet wood. This one should drink well for many years to come. Enjoy…and I mean it!
- KosherWino Rating: 96 points (Rating Chart)
- Region: Israel
- Color: Red
- Varietal: 77% Cabernet Sauvignon, 13% Petit Verdot, 10% Merlot
- Alcohol: 14.5%
- Mevushal: No