Home > Israel > Dalton Safsufa Vineyards Chardonnay/Sauvignon Blanc 2009

Dalton Safsufa Vineyards Chardonnay/Sauvignon Blanc 2009


Welcome back, my rabid readers! Today we are going to take a look at Dalton‘s Safsufa Vineyards blend of Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc. There are a multitude of topics that we could address insofar as the making of this wine, whereas we saw an oaked Chardonnay in Yarden’s Odem offering, this item is completely unoaked.

When grape juice (or must as it is called in the wine world) is being fermented, there are various vessels that could be used for this purpose in modern wine making. Some wines are made in oak barrels, and others are done in stainless steel. And yet others, particularly in parts of Italy and France, will use a ceramic vessel that is lined with glass. Each of these vessels have an effect on the final product, both in terms of its fermentation process as well as the aging of the wine before it is put into a bottle.

In particular, stainless steel allows for the natural fruity and acidic qualities in the wine to come to the forefront, and this is precisely what happened in this wine. Additionally, with our subject for today, there was no malo-lactic fermentation (hence, no buttery quality in the wine). So the end result is a wine with a high level of acidity and the natural fruity flavors of the wine are dominant.

Perhaps it was because I was not pairing it well (I had roast chicken on Friday night and then I had the wine again alone on Saturday for lunch), but it just wasn’t appealing to me, particularly for the price. While I like an acidic wine when the weather gets warmer, it needs balance with fruit, mineral and perhaps even some herbal qualities (which one would expect to come through the Sauv. Blanc). However, the acid was just so dominant that it overpowered any fruity qualities in the wine.

This was particularly disappointing, given my expectations from nosing the wine. I found the bright citrusy and apple aromas right off and some lemon rind and something along the terms of mint as well: I was getting excited that this was a very complex-for-the-money wine.

However, the palate did not mirror the qualities I found on the nose. The acid was the first thing I could identify in the wine; there was no hiding the fact that the acid was the dominant player in the wine (perhaps with a white-fleshed fish this would be a better match?). The citrus came through near the finish but even then it was muted by the acid.

ADDITION: I came back to the wine after Shabbos and tried it again. It had changed considerably. While the acid was still upfront and domineering, there was some more fruit coming out and a hint of slatey mineral on the finish. It’s tasting better now. Perhaps I had it too cold upon opening the wine (I blame the fridge and an extended walk home because of a cranky and uncooperative toddler). I would definitely NOT drink this wine ice cold, but rather with a slight chill. Because of the level of acidity this is a great salad wine.

The wine is $16 on the shelf and is mevushal.

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