The Jordanian Extravaganza

Jordan was one of those few to claim their hand in giving wine to the world. Nevertheless, it was not to be seen anywhere on the world wine map. The wineries used local grapes to make not-so-appreciable wines. Lack of viticultural and vinification knowledge and inappropriate viticultural areas held-back the country from displaying its true caliber. It was only after Bulos Zumot took a shot at setting-up a vineyard to cultivate grapes for winemaking.

Bulos Zumot, father of the present owner Omar Zumot, started the company, Zumot Fine Wines, in 1954 as a vintner. The idea of vinyeards and grape growing was virgin to Jordan before Sir Zumot planted the first vine in Madaba. They knew it would be a challenge but never thought it was impossible. Today Omar follows organic viticulture (no pesticides or artificial nutrients)  in his three successfully flourishing vineyards. They let nature play its course. There best crops come from the northernly located Sama vineyards. International grape varieties like Cabernet Sauvignon, Shiraz, and surprisingly Pinot Noir (which isn’t such an easy variety to grow) thrive here amongst the reds. Gewürztraminer, Muscat, Chardonnay, and Pinot Grigio do equally well to produce a unique wine style, comparable to none other.

Zumot’s winemaking approach is simple. They make three variants; an easy drinking Classic range, age-worthy specially crafted Reserve range, and the exquisite Winemaker’s Selection label.

Wi-Not team tasted the following wines,  here’s our review:-Saint George, Zumot  Muscat 2009:Aromatic, sharp, complex.Clean, youthful and pale straw. Clean nose, that is very floral and lychee dominant. There is a hint of musk, and burning alcohol. Has a very light body. Very attacking in a very impressive manner. Custard apple, tad floral and ginger, slightly vegetative. Has a good gripping mouthfeel.Saint George, Zumot Cabernet Sauvignon, 2008 :Corpulent, plum-oak-chocolatey, tannic-tight.Deep ruby red, fading rims but youthful. Pronounced nose of soft fleshy fruits, like plums, cherries and cranberries. With hints of spices, ink and beetroot juice. A full bodied dry wine with balanced acidity, and dusty, raw tannins. Black fruits, dark cherries and slightly peppery. The wine has a short aftertaste, and a pleasant finish.

Jordan’s presence on the wine map was only theoretical till then, in the bibles. Their brand name Saint George, as they proudly state, put the country as a vino on the global map. Today they are synonym to Jordanian wines and are a must-visit for aficionados visiting the country. The range is yet to be explored in India and is not shy test the waters in the desi market. Who thought wines from this part of the globe will also be featuring on our local restaurants’ lists? And we wonder if the competition is yet to hit the scene!!

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