Wines of IsraelThe Eastern Mediterranean is the cradle of viticulture, and Israel has made wine since biblical times. The country's location along a historic wine trading route between Mesopotamia and Egypt brought winemaking knowledge and influence to the area. Wine played a significant role in the religion of the early Israelites with images of grape growing, harvesting and winemaking often being used to illustrate religious ideals. In Roman times, wine from Israel was exported to Rome with the most sought after wines being vintage dated with the name of the winemaker inscribed on the amphora. In the 7th century AD, the Islamic conquest of the Middle East virtually wiped out the region's wine industry.
Israel's modern wine industry came into being at the end of the 19th century, with Baron Edmond de Rothschild of Chateau Lafite in Bordeaux financing the planting of vineyards on the coastal plain near Rishon Letzion. Modern Israeli production is still heavily focused on French varietals.
Israeli wines are not cheap, and there are some very good reasons for that - agriculture in Israel is not subsidized as it is in many other countries, and all the materials for wine-making (other than grapes) are imported from Europe. Production costs in Israel are high as are the costs of moving the wines to the UK. Nevertheless, prices remain reasonable for the quality and we are pleased to offer wines from both Vitkin, a small producer offering a wide range of wines at reasonable prices, and Margalit, one of the top boutique producers in Israel.
Note: These wines are not Kosher
Vitkin's mainstream offering, the Israeli Journey range, offers a level of complex and sophisticated wines at what are, for Israeli wines, excellent value prices. Vitkin's main vineyards are planted all over the country: the Ella Valley, Judean Hills, Jerusalem Mountains and Carmel Mountain slopes. The winery grows its grapes in these vineyards, under total and continuous control of all the processes of growth, from the matching of the variety to the nature of the soil and climate of the vineyard location and until the time of harvest.