When winemaker Hillel Manne moved to Beit El in the Binyamin region in1996, he asked about agricultural land. He was told that the shallow Terra Rosa soil on limestone, coupled with harsh winters, made agriculture here unlikely. That was when he got excited.
With his experience managing the vineyard at Israel’s Kibbutz Shaalavim and studying agriculture at the University of California, he felt he was onto some excellent wine territory. Israel’s warm climate ensures the right sugar level, and the cool evenings of Beit El (altitude: 2,854 feet) produce excellent acid retention. The result is grapes maturing with the perfect balance between the two a balance that preserves the wine naturally for years.
Winemaking is hardly new here though. Ancient winemakers poured their fermenting grape juice into clay jugs and stored them in the many caves around Beit El. As Hillel tells his guests, “We have an unsurpassed tradition to live up to.”
Majestique Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon, 2014
The first Reserve wine from Beit El, this Cabernet grew on a canyon hillside on terra rosa soil 850 meters above sea level. Low yield, 3 weeks skin maceration. 20 months in 100% new French Oak.
Cliff View Carignan, 2014
The Cliff View is opulent with flavors of blackberries, blueberries, vanilla, white pepper, and nutmeg. The dark fruit flavors linger through the long graceful finish. This inimitable red varietal will reward aging but is beautiful and complex now.
Cabernet Sauvignon, 2014
This Cabernet shows classic black currant, black cherry and plum flavors with notes of black pepper, licorice, and chocolate. Fine persistent tannins and crisp acidity provide balance to the wine’s lovely concentration and texture.