A tour of Israel that will be a feast for all the senses

by Michael Sax

Israel is renown for its wines. Israeli wines are now sold all around the world. And the wines have won awards.

Israeli Wines

Israel has more than ten thousand acres of vineyards. And with over 30 varieties of grapes, the wines have delicious flavors. The expert winemakers produce 55 million wine bottles annually. These are produced in the roughly 300 wineries in Israel. They make dry wine. And semi-dry wine. They also make sweet wine. As well as bubbly wine. Dessert wine is also a favorite that Israel produces. Due to the high quality of the wines, the wines have won prestigious competitions.

History of Israeli Wines

Jews have been making wine in Israel since biblical times. The Book of Deuteronomy discusses the “gefen”, or “fruit of the vine.”  Israel was a trading route for wines between Egypt and Mesopotamia. During the Roman times, Israeli wines were sought after and exported to Rome. When Muslims occupied Israel during the Islamic Rule, they limited wine making.

In the late 1800’s, the French Baron Edmond de Rothschild, imported French grape species and technical knowledge to Israel. In modern times, much of the wine is kosher. There are five main wine regions in Israel. The main region is the Galilee. Second is the Judean Hills. Third is the Samson region. There are also the Negev and Shomron regions.

Many Israeli wineries have visitor centers. People can go and see first hand how wine is made. They can see the barrels, touch the grapes, and taste the wine. It is truly a worthwhile experience. For people who don’t like wine, they can also try Israeli grape juice. While not as popular as the wine, it has a benefit. It does not have alcohol, for people who avoid alcohol. And so they can still enjoy the produce of the Holy Land. Who knows, perhaps you’ll be able to make your own wine!

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