About Red Wines from Israel

About Red Wines from Israel
As a wine-producing country, Israel has reinvented itself, moving away from the sweet, grapey concord wines for religious celebrations to an industry that now is known for complex, well structured red and white table wines. Today in regions such as Galilee and the Judean Hills, beautifully crafted versions of several red wines such as Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Syrah are being produced. Quality is very good to excellent, with prices ranging from inexpensive to the high $20 range for American retail shelves. While most wines in Israel are still kosher, there are some that are not; these are small lot production, often made by garage winemakers. The bottom line is that Israel has been accepted as a quality wine producer for several years and things will only get better in this regard.

Top Picks for Israel

Red Wines

Galil Mountain 2018 Yiron Red Blend Galilee
93 points
$38
Ruby black color. Aromas and flavors of prune, black currant, fresh rosemary, and adobo pepper with a tannic, lively, dry full body and a peppery, nuanced, long finish that presents suggestions of blueberry, cured meat, kalamata olive, and cigar box with firm, drying, well-integrated tannins and moderate oak flavor. Savory and herbal notes mingle with hints of soft vanilla in this wine that culminates in a long, complex finish.
Psagot 2017 Sinai Red Blend Jerusalem
92 points
$19.99
Best Buy
Violet color. Aromas and flavors of dried rose, buttercream, tar, acacia, cedar, and ripe plum with a slightly chewy, vibrant, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a tingling, intricate, long finish with suggestions of blackberry jam, pastry crust, and honey. A deep and dynamic red with exquisite style and substance.
Awards: '2019 World Value Wine Challenge-Top 10 Red Wine $20 and Under' Best Value Israeli Red
92 points $19.99 Best Buy
Hermon 2020 Mount Hermon Indigo Red Blend Galilee
91 points
$14
Best Buy
Ruby black color. Aromas and flavors of cherry jam, violet candies, licorice, and sassafras with a chewy, crisp, dry full body and a warming, medium-long finish that shows accents of blueberry compote, iron, and slate with chewy tannins and heavy oak flavor. This unexpected take on Cabernet is dripping with ripe fruit and licorice; pair with venison or game.
Awards: '2021 World Value Wine Challenge-Top 10 Red Wine $15 and Under'
91 points $14 Best Buy
Galil Mountain 2019  Cabernet Sauvignon
91 points
$17
Best Buy
Black ruby color. Aromas and flavors of baked blueberry, maple candies, eucalyptus, and black olive with a chewy, lively, dry full body and a warming, complex, long finish that exhibits impressions of date, blackberry, cinnamon stick, and charred plum with firm, well-integrated tannins and moderate oak flavor. A laser focused Cabernet blend that brings harmonious structure to the table.
91 points $17 Best Buy
Jezreel Valley 2017 Alfa Red Blend Galilee
91 points
$19.99
Black violet color. Aromas of baked blackberry cobbler, polished furniture, roasted walnut, black tea, and coriander with a slightly chewy, vibrant, fruity full body and a peppery, nuanced, long dried figs and dates and poppyseed babka finish. A big and bold Israeli blend begging to accompany succulent grilled meats.
Awards: '2019 World Value Wine Challenge-Top 10 Red Wine $20 and Under'
91 points $19.99
Galil Mountain 2020  Syrah
89 points
$17
Ruby black color. Aromas of hibiscus black tea, cassis, smoke, and peppered jerky with a medium-to-full body and a peppery, delightful, long sweet stewed plum, blackberry , graphite, pink peppercorn, and bitter chocolate finish with firm, well-integrated tannins and moderate oak flavor. A layered Syrah that unfolds notes of spice and chocolate without losing focus on brooding fruit.