For their granddaughter’s bat-mitzvah these grandparents enjoyed a day touring Israeli wineries in Bet Shemesh. They have traveled to Israel many times and visit their daughter in Bet Shemesh but they had no idea that this many wineries exist in Israel. During their wine tour I explained to them the developing wine industry, its challenges and advancements.
Our first winery visit was Agur Winery where we enjoyed a tasting with Alon, the manager of Agur Winery. We tasted the Blanca 2009, Rosa 2009, Kessem 2009 and Special Reserve 2008. The Rosa was enjoyed by people that thought they did not like Rosa but this one is oily, silky and fruity.
Our second winery was Tzora Winery where we enjoyed a cheese pairing with Shoresh white (85% Gewürztraminer, 15% Chardonnay), Jerusalem Hills 2008, Givat Haluchim 2008, Shoresh red 2008. The bread was especially delicious today and everyone enjoyed the elegant atmosphere and wines of Tzora Winery. The third winery we visited was Tzuba Winery. First we visited the vineyards where I explained the terrior, high yield and low yield, and differences of how vineyards are planted. The group then tasted the Chardonnay 2009, Shiraz 2008, Cabernet Sauvignon 2008, Metsuda 2006 and Chardonnay late harvest dessert wine. Tzuba was their favorite winery since Paul, the winemaker, really explained to the science of winemaking.
At the end of the day, the group learned a lot about the science and art of the wine industry in Israel and maybe will establish their own winery in Bet Shemesh one day!
Lisa and Rick, enjoy wine on a weekly basis, and they know some Israeli brands but because they live on the West Coast of the US, they do not get much variety of Israeli wines. This is their third visit to Israel so they wanted to experience something different and taste the wines of the Jerusalem Hills.
We started the day at Tzuba Winery where we visited the ancient wine press and vineyards. I explained the terrior of the Jerusalem Hills and the importance of the vineyards to the outcome of the wine. We enjoyed a tasting with Paul, the winemaker of Tzuba Winery. We tasted the Chardonnay 2009, Merlot 2006, Cabernet Sauvignon 2008, and Metsuda 2006.
Our second winery was Tzora Winery. We tasted 3 different cheeses with the Shoresh white (85% Gewürztraminer, 15% Chardonnay), Jerusalem Hills 2008, Givat Haluchim 2008, Shoresh red 2007 and 2008. The Shoresh red was delicious and very smooth!
Our last winery was Agur Winery. We happen to stop by the winery while a wine connoisseur was visiting so we joined their tasting and received a barrel tasting and explanation from Shuki, which is always entertaining and philosophical. We drank Shuki’s Blanca 2009, Rosa 2009, Kessem 2009 and Special Reserve 2008. We ended the day with a delicious Arabic lunch in Abu Gosh.
The Seinuk family from New York and Puerto Rico enjoyed a wine, beer and dairy tour on Tuesday, March 15th. During the ride to our first stop at Jacob’s Dairy, I explained the history of wine in Israel and the modern day trends in the Israeli wine industry. At Jacob’s Dairy we stood outside their cheese and bakery shop and tasted a brie cheese, gouda cheese, camembert cheese and caciotta cheese with the Galil Mountain Cabernet Shiraz 2008. The wine mixed with the cheese is a chemical reaction and the protein of the cheese tones down the tannins of the wine. After eating and buying some great spreads, we visited the cows! Not everyone on the tour was a wine lover, but they were beer lovers! Our second visit was Alexander Brewery, a microbrewery in Emek Hefer, that is a second career of Ori, the owner. We toured the facility and learned the process of making beer. We then enjoyed a tasting of the Blond, Ambre and Black beer. For lunch we ate at Tishbi Estate Winery, a kosher dairy establishment under the vines in the Carmel Mountains. Lunch was enjoyed by all and with our pizza, salads and pasta dishes we enjoyed a tasting of the 2010 Gewürztraminer, 2008 Special Reserve Chardonnay, 2007 Estate Cabernet Sauvignon, 2007 Shiraz Estate and for dessert we tasted the 2006 Barbara Zinfandel Port-style wine. After a tour of the facility and learning about the wine making process as an art and science we enjoyed some time in the newly opened chocolate and wine tasting room
.We finished the day at Binyamina Winery for a small tasting of their BIN and Yogev series. They are in renavations so the tasting room is outside in a tent.
A couple of times a month, I go on research trips to explore new wineries in Israel, but today led me to a different type of industry in Israe: Beer and Cheese! I started the day off at Alexander Brewery in Emek Hefer and met with Ori, the owner and beer passionate! Ori retired as a pilot and now is following his second career into his hobby, which is making good beer! His facility is state of the art and he even hired a brew master from Denmark to make the best possible Israeli beer. He makes a Blond, Amber and Black beer. I look forward to bringing groups to Alexander Brewery! My second stop was Recanati Winery, since they are in the same industrial area. Recanati’s is one of the leading wineries in Israel with its premium wines and expert winemaker, Gil Shatzberg. Their grapes come from excellent vineyards from all around the country. They have a nice selection of wines to taste
My third stop was Jacob’s Dairy, a family owned dairy since 1996. I went into the facility and saw the cows, aging rooms and of course the cheese shop which includes a bakery. Jacob’s Dairy has over 25 types of cheeses and is one of the leading dairies in Israel
My forth visit was Morad Winery, a winery established by husband and wife who have been making wine from fruit, herbs and chocolate for decades. I tasted orange wine, apple wine, chocolate wine, carob wine, cinnamon wine, almond wine, pomegranate wine, pasaflora wine and many more. This is a great stop for something different! On my way up to Zichron Yaakov, I stopped at Carmel and Somek Winery to see my friends, which is always a nice visit. On my way out of Zichron, I stopped at a new Brewery in the old section of Zichron called Pavo. Pavo Brewery overlooks the Mediterranean Sea and the Carmel Mountains. They have 5 selections of beer and a restaurant attached that serves kosher sausages, nachos, fried and lots of beer food!
I am excited to bring my future clients to all these places!
Connie and her friends, who are all teachers, enjoyed a wine tour in the Jerusalem Hills. They enjoyed the drinking, of course, but also learned a lot about the history of wine in Israel, the modern day trends and the art and science of wine making. We started the day at Agur Winery, where Shuki was in a great mood, and he explained his vineyards, philosophy of a winemaker and his Judaen style wine. We tasted the Blaca 2010, Rosa 2009, Kessem 2009 and Special Reserve 2008, which was a favorite of the group. The second winery we visited was Tzora winery, where paired cheese with wine and loved the bitter olive oil. Shula explained to us the history of Tzora Winery and we tasted the Shoresh White 2010 (blend of 85% Gewürztraminer, 15% Chardonnay) , Givat Hachalukim 2008, Judean Hills 2008, and Shoresh (red) 2008. Shula’s delightful personality and knowledgeable explanations gave the experience at Tzora an unforgettable one.
We then traveled to Abu Gosh and ate lunch at Caravan. We enjoyed kabab, chicken, salatim and fries. Baklava and Turkish coffee was a treat at the end.
Our third winery visit was Tzuba Winery. Eitan gave us a tasting of the Chardonnay 2009, Shiraz 2008, Metsuda 2006 and Chardonnay Dessert wine. We received a treat of Port wine when Paul, the winemaker came up to visit the group.
A fun day was had by all and know each of the teachers can enjoy a glass of wine when they are grading papers!
Israeli Wine Show presents a wine and cheese pairing at Jacobs Dairy with 3 wines from the Golan Heights Winery with food critic, Gila Levitan. We tasted Chardonnay 2008, organic, Odem Vineyard, Yarden Syrah 2006, Cabernet Sauvignon 2008.
This week I sat down with winemaker, Shuki Yashuv, of Agur Winery and tasted his Blanca 2009 and Special Reserve 2008.
I really enjoyed this boutique winery in the Jerusalem Hills. Karmai Yosef, Bravdo
This week I enjoyed a simple red blend from Shiloh Winery.
Arianna and gang took a spectacular wine tour with me to 5 wineries in the Upper Galilee. The wineries we visited were Naaman Winery, Dalton Winery, Adir Winery, Rimon Winery and Galil Mountain Winery. Arianna and some of her friends are taking a wine appreciation course at Yale so they decided to test their academics on Israeli wine.
We started the day at Kfar Giladi and took a scenic drive to Ramot Neftaly where we met with Rami Naaman, the winemaker of Naaman Winery. Rami explained to us his passion of winemaking the different ways he is creative with his blends, barrels and wine. We had a tasting of 6 different wines, ranging from a Rosa, Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon, and a few of Rami’s special blends that are named after Musician, such as his Pink Floy, Deep Purple, King Crimson and Black Velvet.
Our second winery visit was Adir Winery where Arianna’s group loved the Adir Port! They enjoyed a tasting of 3 different goat cheeses, goat yogurt and 4 selections of wines. The third winery was Dalton Winery where the group received a large selection of wines ranging from their different series, white, red, dessert and liquors.
Galil Mountain Winery
The forth winery was a great surprise for the group since they love their pomegranates. Rimon Winery was very quiet and we had the whole winery to ourselves to drink Pomegranate dry wine, dessert wine , bubbly and Port style wine. The regular Pom juice was delicious as well!
Our last winery was Galil Mountain Winery where we drank the Sauvignon Blanc 2010, Avivim 2008, Barbara 2008, Meron 2008 and Yiron 2007. At the end of the day we saw the outlook of Lebanon and Le’Chaimed to a most enjoyable wine tour!