It is no secret that the land of Eretz Yisrael has been a wine producing region for centuries. Almost as synonymous as wine is to Eretz Yisrael, is Carmel Winery to the heart and soul of not only Israel but also of the Jewish people.
Founded in 1882, Carmel Winery was the first established winery in the land to be known as Eretz Yisrael today. In the later part of the 1880s, the winery began to struggle, and reinforcements were sought out from none other than Baron Edmond de Rothschild.
The Baron had a reputation not only among the most premier chateaux in France but also among the Jewish people. The Baron helped Carmel establish multiple locations to produce wine employing classic French techniques, including underground cellars, to mimic the most prestigious chateaux of Bordeaux. The latest state-of-the-art equipment was used in these wineries. The first pumps, electrical generators, and even telephone lines in Israel were used by Carmel Winery. It is somewhat hard to imagine what times were like without all the modern technology we have the luxury of using today, but Carmel was at the forefront of innovation and had big aspirations to continue to push the limit for the wines but also Eretz Yisrael as a country.
Carmel Winery dedicates resources to make its wines stand out for consumers and they are continuing to make strides. Following a multi-million dollar facility upgrade, the winery has added the Badatz Rav Rubin kosher certification as a notch in its belt as another accomplishment. Being the most famous winery in Israel is no easy feat; it is challenging for a winery producing around 15 million bottles of wine a year to create a wine for each of its customers. Carmel’s portfolio has covered every price range category and style without compromising on anything. Herein lies the secret to its success—never compromising its family values. Carmel wines are here for every stage and celebration, providing a quality product for your family.
The Rothschild family’s influence on the wine industry is almost a parallel to the well-known Schottenstein family’s dedication to Torah and klal Yisrael around the world, but specifically in the United States. Supporting the growth of Torah knowledge and communities have been paramount to the mission of the Schottenstein family. It was a no brainer for the family to acquire a portion of Carmel Winerary’s shares as the winery is an integral part of Jewish life. No matter the occasion, whether it be a Shabbat meal, bris or wedding, Carmel wines are there for you and your family.
So what is new with Carmel wines in addition to the new supervision, owners and facility? As if the aforementioned was not enough, everything is new! The entire brand is going through a transformation, esthetically improving the labels and adding a few series that will give you a great bang for your buck. Adhering to traditional winemaking methods while providing more money for value in the product, is something that offers Carmel a competitive edge.
Series offered include Selected, Private Collection, Appellation, Single Vineyard and the flagship Signature, which includes the Mediterranean and Limited Edition. I have always enjoyed Carmel wines, especially the single vineyard series. The Kayoumi Vineyard Riesling is one of my favorite varieties, and the Admon Vineyard Malbec is not to be overlooked. The Private Collection is a QPR superstar label accessible to all consumers at a fantastic price point. The winery is serious about its release dates as well. All of the upper level wines are stored in the winery for four years. This is an excellent testament to its quality and the quality control of the products coming out of Carmel Winery. With the Yomim Tovim celebrations filling up your calendars, make sure to pick up a few Carmel wines to enjoy with your guests and, most importantly, for all joyous moments with your family. L’chaim!
Teaneck resident Yael Geller holds a Masters of Public Health from George Washington University and is a long-time wine enthusiast.
By Yael E. Geller, MPH