The 2007 MEDITERRANEAN is a blend of grapes sourced from various regions, but mostly Shomron. Carmel’s Adam Montefiore has, for some time, been attempting to develop a “Mediterranean” identity for Israel. Following along those lines, he says that this is Carmel’s “first attempt to make a wine inspired by the Mediterranean blends,” principally a blend of Petite Sirah (15%), Carignan (37%) and Shiraz (26%), the former two being old vines plots of land, with a dollop of Viognier (2%). All of the terroirs were at least 450 meters above sea level. It was aged for 15 months in a mixture of new and old French oak. To start with, it is hard to believe this is a 2007. It tasted like a barrel sample, fruity, grapey, sweet and succulent. It seemed, frankly, rather one dimensional on opening, however tasty. What it needed was about 90 minutes of aeration. Suddenly, it was more like real wine than grape juice, ripe tannins surrounding and supporting the fruit and a little earthy character popping up here and there, not that this is going to remind anyone of a complex, intellectual wine. It did fade a bit fast and thinned rather quickly as well, but this is a lot of fun. There were 20,000 bottles produced. Drink now-2015. Although these wines are imported by Royal, probably the best known Kosher Wine importer in the USA, I am advised by the winery that not all of them may be immediately placed in our marketplace. With both the Carmels and to a lesser extent the Yatirs (a boutique owned by Carmel), I seemed to smell a lot of funky notes this year, perhaps attributable to different issues, perhaps including some reductive issues, which might improve with time. It will be interesting to see where these wines go.Importer: Royal Wine Corp, Bayonne, N.J.; tel: (718) 534-0118.