The Gewurztraminer is a new wine for Tishbi Winery. They started producing the Gewurz in 2009 and it was an instant success. This wine has a hint of sweetness to it although it is technically a dry wine. The grapes are from the Jerusalem Hills and are grown in chalky limestone soil 1000 meters above sea level. This wine is crisp and the acid is well balanced. The color is a beautiful light gold. On the nose, this wine is very flowery but to the palate there are hints of leeches, hyssop and apples.
This wine is to be enjoyed on a warm summer’s day on its own or with a white fish, fruit salad or stir-fry.
By Esther Cohen
For the Tishbi family, the love for wine and growing grapes started during the First Aliyah in 1882. The original pioneers of the Tishbi family were Malcha and Michal Chemalinsky. In 1925 Chaim Bialik visited the Chemalinksy family and gave them the new last name TISHBI which is an acronym in Hebrew that means “Residents of Shvaya in the land of Israel”. The Tishbi family was commissioned by Baron Edmond de Rothschild to plant modern day vineyards in Zichron Yaakov, which overlook the Mediterranean Sea and the Carmel Mountains.
A century later, in 1984, Jonathan Tishbi, the great-grandson of Malcha and Michal, founded the Tishbi Estate Winery in Zichron Yaakov. Today Tishbi Estate Winey is one of the top 10 largest wineries in Israel, producing one million bottles a year.
Tishbi Winery is a family owned winery where each family member partakes in the winery business. Jonathan and Nili have three children and 5 grandchildren. Golan Tishbi is the winemaker, he was trained in New Zealand. Oshra began as the export manager and now she owns her own line of Oshra Fine Food which includes delicious wine jams such as Cabernet Fig, Mango Chardonnay and Strawberry Champagne. These jams are now exported to the States and Canada and can be found in William Sonoma. Micha runs the business and law aspects of the winery. Micha’s wife Efrat designs the labels on the bottles and Golan’s wife Karen makes the ceramic wine jugs and dishes that are sold in the Visitors Center.
A visit to the Tishbi winery is an experience! There is a kosher dairy restaurant attached to the winery that is headed by a world class chef. You can enjoy delicious pizza made in a brick oven, pasta, fresh salads, and homemade bread. The newest addition to the winery is a Chocolate and Wine tasting room that was established in partnership with Valrohana Chocolates. During the tasting the guests receive a fleet of 6 chocolates paired with 6 Tishbi Estate Wines. The tasting is delicious! The chocolates are from different parts of the World and have a varying level of coco. My favorite is 70% coco with the Single Vineyard Cabernet Sauvignon.
The Tishbi family is seen as innovators and leaders in the Israeli wine and food industry. They have a few hundred dunams of their own vineyards but they also buy many of their grapes from kibbutzes and private farmers in the Golan Heights, Galilee, Jerusalem Hills and Negev. Tishbi has a special partnership with Sde Bokar in which they make their Special Reserve Bordeaux style wine every few years.