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Carmel Moscato di Carmel 2003

Muscat from Israel
    0% ABV
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    Winemaker Notes

    Critical Acclaim

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    Carmel

    Carmel

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    Carmel, Israel
    Image of winery
    Carmel Winery is the historic winery of Israel. It was founded in 1882 by Baron Edmond de Rothschild, owner of Chateau Lafite in Bordeaux. Carmel owns the two largest wineries in Israel, at Rishon Le Zion, south of Tel Aviv and at Zichron Ya'acov, south of Haifa. Each has deep underground cellars built by Rothschild in the 19th century. Carmel also has two small, state-of-the-art wineries close to key vineyards, to allow production of small quantities of handcrafted wines. These are Kayoumi Winery, situated in the Upper Galilee, and Yatir Winery, in the northeastern Negev. The story of Carmel represents the story of Israel, and the recent developments of Carmel's wines, symbolizes the revolution of Israeli wine in recent years.

    With a rich history of wine production dating back to biblical times, Israel is a part of the cradle of wine civilization. Here, wine was commonly used for religious ceremonies as well as for general consumption. During Roman times, it was a popular export, but during Islamic rule around 1300, production was virtually extinguished. The modern era of Israeli winemaking began in the late 19th century with help from Bordeaux’s Rothschild family. Accordingly, most grapes grown in Israel today are made from native French varieties. Indigenous varieties are all but extinct, though oenologists have made recent attempts to rediscover ancient varieties such as Marawi for commercial wine production.

    In Israel’s Mediterranean climate, humidity and drought can be problematic, concentrating much of the country’s grape growing in the north near Galilee, Samaria near the coast and at higher elevations in the east. The most successful red varieties are Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, and Syrah, while the best whites are made from Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc. Many, though by no means all, Israeli wines are certified Kosher.

    Singularly aromatic, often sweet, and always enjoyable, Muscat never takes itself too seriously. Muscat is actually an umbrella name for a diverse set of grapes, some of which are genetically related while others are not. The two most important versions are Muscat Blanc à Petits Grains and Muscat of Alexandria, the former being of considerably higher quality. Both are grown throughout the world and can be made in a wide range of styles, from dry and aromatic wines to sweet and richly perfumed dessert wines. It is well known in Italy's Piedmont region for Moscato d’Asti, a slightly sparkling semi-sweet wine that is refreshing and low in alcohol.

    In the Glass

    Muscat wines possess intense aromatics of peaches, rose petals, geranium, orange blossom, and lychee, often with a hint of sweet spice, and always with a uniquely grapey character that is uncommon in other wines.

    Perfect Pairings

    Thanks to its naturally low alcohol levels, Muscat is a perfect match for spicy Asian cuisine, especially when the wine has a little bit of residual sugar. Off-dry Muscat can work well with lighter desserts like key lime pie and lemon meringue, while fully sweet Muscat-based dessert wines are enjoyable after dinner with an assortment of cheeses.

    Sommelier Secret

    Muscat is one of the oldest known grape varieties, dating as far back as the days of the ancient Greeks and Romans. Pliny the Elder wrote in the 13th century of a sweet, perfumed grape variety so attractive to bees that he referred to it as uva apiana, or “grape of the bees.” Most likely, he was describing one of the Muscat varieties.

    RWC171413_2003 Item# 75611