In 1955 the first wine grape vineyards were planted on the hills surrounding Kibbutz Hulda. Thirteen years later Yariv Lavie was born, the son of a local vintner. From his early childhood, Yariv recalls growing up surrounded by the scents of the earth and vines.
Over the years he gradually joined his father, worked in the vineyards and was exposed to the close relationships with the various wineries which purchased their grapes.
In 1997, Yariv began producing wine at a small winery which he founded. There, he mastered the art of winemaking.
After gaining some experience in the field, Yariv went on and worked as a wine maker in several Israeli wineries and traveled abroad in order to broaden his studies.
During these years he was also exposed to the world of wine marketing and fell in love with the relationships established between the marketing and sales people and the wine lovers. This led to Yariv’s decision to open a wine store where he can personally meet with the customers face to face, sharing his passion for wine and introducing them to the hidden paths of the world of wine.
With the holiday season upon us, I got to speaking to wine expert Yariv about the New Year's Eve classic – champagne. Though I am unsure as to when or where the tradition began, it seems to me that come New Year’s Eve most people just have to have a bottle of the bubbly. Champagne and its sparkling siblings are considered celebration wines the world over and as such are usually uncorked on special occasions. The hollow clout and the aromas released when one opens a bottle of sparkling wine serve as a signal to let the festivities begin.
When speaking to Yariv about the various “Bubbly” options for New Year’s Eve (e.g. Champagne, Cava etc.), Yariv's passion for wine is apparent. “Of course, if you have the budget, there is nothing like a good French Champagne” says Yariv. Nevertheless he admits that very often a good bottle of Cava (a Spanish sparkling wine) will definitely get the job done while offering an excellent value for money.
The Wine Hall offers a wide selection of various Israeli and International wines. In the bubbly department, Yariv has several recommendations to fit every pallet and pocket.
*Israeli – Golan Heights, Blanc de Blanc – one of the top sparkling wines in Israel.
*Cava – Cordon Negro – Excellent value for money.
*Champagne – For those of you who want to go all out, the Wine Hall offers an exclusive bottle of Vintage, Bollinger, 1997 or champagne produced by the Pommery Maison.
Yariv also warned me that when you drink sparkling wines, it is usually not enough to serve only one bottle. To that end, in honor of the New Year’s celebration the Wine Hall is offering:
3 bottles of cava for only NIS 110 – now that definitely calls for celebration!
And if you are going to be visiting the Wine Hall anyway, why not do it on Friday, when local wineries are invited to display and introduce their wines to customers, or a Thursday evening, when the Wine Hall hosts wine tasting events with quality cheeses, fresh breads, local olive oil and several wines representing some of the finest wine regions from Israel and around the world.
In addition, special for the holidays, Wine Hall will be holding a special sparkling wine tasting call Sparkling Festival of Lights this Thursday the 25th of December at 8pm. Wines to be tasted are: Veuve Du Vernay, Castel d'Olerdola, Cordon Negro, Codorniu Reserva, and Codorniu Pinot Noir. Light refreshments will also be served.
Happy New Year!
4 Shlomtzion Hamalka, Jerusalem