Historically, no product which has accumulated as much cultural, social and historic value as has wine. The depth of the significance and the layers derive from, among other things, the complexity of the wine production process, influenced by countless components, only some of which are under the vintner’s control.
Wine as Science and Art
Wine production is first and foremost an art, and only then a science. Wine lives and breathes, changes and grows and like a human being, doesn’t need to be understood completely. Quite the contrary – good wine leaves a bit of mystery and room for surprises. In order to produce good wine much knowledge is required, but there is also a need for skilled senses. So many variables are involved that it is difficult to know which specific ones exert influence. We are constantly learning to know each vineyard and plot. It’s an ongoing process which spans over seven consecutive harvests. After each harvest we understand a little more, and are still surprised at our discoveries.
Accepting the Variance
Wine is not a processed product but rather an entirely natural one. Therefore, there are never two identical harvests, and there are no two identical wines. The differences begin with the grape itself, which changes each year, each day and each hour. Even during fermentation, anything can happen – you know what goes in, but not exactly what comes out. Thus it is necessary to flow with the variance, to accept it and love it.
Let the Cultivar Speak
Each cultivar of grapes has its own beauty and character. The job of the vintner is to preserve these properties in order let the wine be ‘itself’ in the best way, to let the cultivar express itself, preserve its original flavor, and not try to change it. Therefore we use old barrels in which the wood does not dominate the flavor.
It is also necessary to let the region express itself. We are neither in the Negev nor in the Galilee; not in Tuscany nor in California. This is the Ella Valley, with its own geology and climate. Our aim is to extract the best from our region, our grapevines, our uniqueness and our variety.
Elegance is a quality which best characterizes our wines: on the one hand, proper restraint and balance between all the flavor components, the scents and the colors, all of which need to be precise for the cultivar and the region; and on the other hand, like attire, something creative, surprising and interesting, which sometimes deviates from the rules.
Elegant wine is “broad” wine, which slowly releases its flavors and reveals new things to the nose, the tongue and the palate, producing a complex experience.
Elegance is also expressed in the manner in which the wine ages, matures and improves. Like an actor who begins as a handsome twenty-something and at age sixty or seventy looks even better, more interesting, deeper – without losing the original features which caused us to fall in love with him.