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Israel (ES)
Israël (F)
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Israël (N)

The country of Canaan as the origin of today's Israel is one of the oldest wine-growing regions. The “Promised Land” was established under Abraham around 2000 to 1900 and under Moses around 1300 to 1200 BC. BC settled by the Israelites. However, the two events were not exactly the same area because the borders were fluid and constantly changing. Canaan stretched from Sidon (now Sayda in Lebanon) to Gaza and encompassed the coastal strip and hinterland on the east coast of the Mediterranean Sea with today's Israel and parts of Lebanon. Jordan and Syria, The current name of Palestine (not to be confused with the much smaller Palestinian Autonomous Region in the West Bank) was not created until the 2nd century AD under Roman rule. At the time of Moses was north to northeast Phenicia (Syria, Lebanon), the Hittite Kingdom (Armenia) and Assyria (Iraq), as well as in the south Egypt (Upper Reich). In these countries viticulture and the landscape played an important role Mesopotamia is considered one of the cradles of wine culture.

Solomon decision in dispute over child and map of Israel and Judah

The vineyards between the Mediterranean and the Dead Sea produced large amounts of wine, which was also delivered to the Egyptian court. Wine played an important role for the Israelites and was part of religious and cultural life. In the Bible there are numerous examples of that time drinking culture, Some Jewish kings gave Bottle sizes their names, for example Salomon. Jeroboam and Rehoboam, By the Babylonian king Nebuchadnezzar II. (605-562 BC) became 586 BC BC conquered Jerusalem. Even after the destruction of Jerusalem and the expulsion of the Jews under Emperor Titus (39-81) in 70 AD, viticulture continued to be practiced in this area under Roman rule. After the Arab conquest around AD 650, due to the Muslim alcohol ban most of the vineyards cleared. It was only through the Crusades that there was a temporary, modest viticulture between 1100 and 1300. After the final expulsion of the Jews, it came to a complete standstill for more than 600 years.

In ancient times the free-growing, tree-like vines were often planted on other trees, the fig tree was very popular. Near the vineyards there was a stone step (1 x 2 m, 20 cm deep) in which the grapes were kicked; Tree presses were only used in Roman times. From this place, several tubes led to a lower pool, where the fermentation took place. In the hot climate this was done very quickly and then the wine was filled into earthenware amphorae that were sealed with bad luck. For the Jews, wine was an important medium for sacrificial rituals where wine was spilled to thank God. The wine for everyday use was filled into small goat skin bags.

According to a written report, “there was more wine than water in Canaan” and wine was mainly drunk. Mostly it was mixed with water (as in ancient Rome) and often with aromatic herbs and other ingredients flavored, An important center of wine production was the city of Gibeon (now Al Djib) near Jerusalem. According to archaeological finds, there were in the 7th century BC. BC for the wines from Gibeon on the amphorae a designation of origin and the name of the vineyard owner. There were numerous cellars where wine could mature for many years at a constant temperature.

The first documentary modern winery was founded in Jerusalem in 1848 by Rabbi Shore. From 1880 Jews began to withdraw from the diaspora to Israel and attempts to revive viticulture failed, but failed due to lack of experience. In 1882, Baron Edmond de Rothschild (1845-1934) the viniculture was revived by a foundation in the amount of 60 million gold francs. Back then, that was an enormous amount and he received the honorary title Hanadiv (benefactor). From the Rhone Valley and the Midi vines were introduced by French oenologists and the local winemakers were supported in viticulture and winemaking. For the time being, however, only kosher wine produced, which was exported to Jewish communities around the world. Rothschild handed over the cellars of Rishon LeZiyyon near Tel Aviv and Zikhron-Yaacov near Haifa to the winegrowers in 1906. Both together today form a cooperative winery with the brand Carmel, After the Six-Day War in 1967, a new wine-growing region was opened on the conquered Golan Heights at 1,000 to 1,200 meters above sea level on volcanic soil.

Israel is divided into five wine regions. The largest is Shomron (Samaria) near the Mediterranean coast south of Haifa. It includes the vineyards around the Carmel Mountains and around the two cities Zichron Ya'akov and Binyamina. The Galilee region to the north includes the area around the Sea of Galilee and the Golan Heights. The lowland Shimshon (Samson) between the Judean highlands and the Mediterranean coast includes the vineyards around Rishon Letzion and Rehovot. The Harei Yehuda region (Judean Mountains, Hebron Mountains) includes vineyards around Jerusalem and in the West Bank. The Negev desert region in the south is divided into the subregions Ramat Arad and southern Negev. The climate is shaped by two long seasons. There are dry summers from April to October without rain and rainy winters from October to March.

Despite these extreme conditions, there are very good conditions for viticulture. Much of the vineyard has an artificial one irrigation, Especially in the south of the country, the large temperature difference between day and night favors a high acidity of the grapes. The dry climate prevents fungal diseases, There is none autochthonous Grape varieties. French are mostly grown; from the beginning of the 2000s there was a change to suitable for the special, Mediterranean climate. In 2012 the total area of vines was 8,000 hectares, of which 3,000 for Blackboard- and 5,000 for wine grapes. The Wine production quantity was 270,000 hectoliters. The Blend 2010 (Statistics Kym Anderson ):



Synonyms or Israeli name


mazuelo red Carignan Noir 971
Merlot red - 647
Cabernet Sauvignon red - 607
Colombard White - 486
Emerald Riesling White - 344
Sauvignon Blanc White - 263
Muscat d'Alexandrie White - 202
Argaman red - 202
Chardonnay White - 142
Chenin Blanc White - 101
Cabernet Franc red - ?
Cot red Malbec ?
Garnacha Tinta red Grenache Noir ?
Gewurztraminer White - ?
Marsanne White - ?
Riesling White - ?
Roussanne White - ?
Sangiovese red - ?
Syrah red - ?
Viognier White - ?

Wine production is still often under the religious supervision of a rabbi to meet the requirements for one kosher wine to ensure. The Israeli wine names are often of Hebrew origin. Traditionally, full-bodied, sweet red wines, nutmeg wines and white sweet wines were produced. Dry or semi-dry wines now make up around 70%. Sparkling wines are produced from Chardonnay using the champagne method. There are around 250 wineries that are well known Avidan. Barkan Wine Cellars Binyamina Carmel, Castel, Cesarea, Clos de Gat, Dalton, Efrat, Flam, Galil Mountain, Golan Heights Winery Har-Meron Margalit, Nachshon, Pelter, Recanati, Sde-Boker, Segal, Soreq, Tabor, Teperberg 1870, Tishbi. Tulip. Vitkin and yatir. The main export markets are Germany, France, Great Britain and the USA.

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