Visitors to Israel’s wineries can enjoy an array of experiences, such as wine education, cheese and chocolate tastings, chef restaurants, vineyard tours and beautiful scenery. While there are many superb wineries to choose from, check out our favorites below.
Distributed in over 32 countries and the winner of over 70 international awards, the Golan Heights Winery is one of the country’s finest. Established over 30 years ago, many will recognize their leading wine brands such as Yarden and Hermon. Wine enthusiasts can enjoy wine tastings, guided tours through the vineyards and more at the winery’s visitors’ center, located in Katzrin, Golan Heights.
Deeply connected to the land, and more specifically the vineyards of Zichron Ya’akov and its surroundings, the Tishbi Winery has grown from humble beginnings to an internationally acclaimed winery encompassing six vineyards. Their products extend further than just wines, with a wide range of wine jellies and jams also on offer. The Tishbi visitors’ center offers wine tours and tastings, as well as Valrhona chocolate tastings and a beautiful restaurant outdoor restaurant where your meal and wine can be enjoyed under the vine leaves.
Family-run Flam Winery is a small boutique winery established in 1998. At the Flam Winery, pride is taken in painstakingly tending to each of their four vineyards’ every need. A tasting of their Old World-style wine shows that this hard work pays off, with many wine writers raving about their Cabernet Sauvignon. Situated close to Beit Shemesh, the winery offers wine tastings with a wine workshop as well as the opportunity to relax and enjoy the surroundings with wine and cheese platters. You can also follow Flam Winery on Facebookand Instagram and keep up to date with tastings and events and to feast your eyes on mouth-watering spreads, which combine wine with everything fine.
Another family-run boutique winery making a name for themselves is the Pelter Winery, founded by Tal Pelter. On return from his oenology studies in Western Australia, Tal (along with his brothers) strove to introduce premium yet accessible wines to the Israeli market. The result is a reflection of the Australian wine culture mixed with the winery’s three core principles: vitality, quality, and family. The family-focused nature of the winery is evident with every sip. Interestingly, the Pelter winery is one of few Israeli wineries producing sparkling wine. The winery can be visited by appointment.
This boutique winery’s focus is not just its smooth wine, but also its social responsibility to its employees. Tulip Winery is located in a small community for people with special needs and uses the winery as a teaching tool to integrate members of the community into the workforce. The visitors’ center in Kfar Tikva (Village of Hope) near Haifa offers wine tastings where visitors can also learn more about the winery and its workforce, and a wine shop.
Founded in 1882, by Baron Edmond de Rothschild, the Carmel Winery is one of Israel’s oldest and largest wineries, producing over 15 million bottles of wine every year. Their wineries are located in four different areas across Israel, such as Zichron Ya’akov and Rishon Le Zion, allowing for production of a wide variety of wines. The Carmel Wine & Culture is a new visitors’ center which houses a wine store, restaurant, tasting rooms, a barrel room and a small cinema.
Founded in 1952 in a former perfume factory, Binyamina Winery is another veteran of the Israeli wine-making scene. Through the years, the wines have transformed from mostly sweet to a diverse spectrum of flavors falling under five different labels. With such a wide variety of wines on offer, there is something for everyone to enjoy. Located in a 90-year-old heritage building in Binyamina, the winery offers wine workshops and tours, as well as a special activity for students –grape juice tasting.
Situated in the foothills of Mount Tabor, this winery produces wines that embrace the natural aromas and flavors of the grapes. The fertile soil and fantastic climate of the Galilee give the wine an ideal foundation by producing the perfect grapes. The winery offers an engaging guided tour that includes wine tasting and takes you to see the wine making process first-hand. And if you are in Israel between July and August, make sure to join their annual ‘Family Harvest Day’ where you can tread the grapes that you handpick earlier in the day.