Over the past few years the Tishbi Winery in Zichron Yaakov has evolved into much more than just another winey and developed into a hedonistic culinary center that is well worth a visit next time you are in the area
Over the past few years the Tishbi Winery in Zichron Yaakov has evolved into much more than just another winey and developed into a hedonistic culinary center that is well worth a visit next time you are in the area. Today Tishbi’s visitor’s center features tasting of excellent valrhona chocolates paired with wines, a very nice dairy restaurant, gourmet olive oils and specialty wine & fruit jellies produced under the “Fine Foods by Oshra Tishbi” label; and while I haven’t tried it yet Tishbi recently began serving smoked brisket made on the premises.
The Tishbi family is one of the oldest players in the Israeli wine industry. After emigrating from Romania in the second half of the 19th century and settling nearby what was then known as the town of Zamarin, the Tishbi’s began planting vineyards on the slopes of the Carmel Mountain. In 1887, at the request of the Baron Edmond de Rothschild (who was LAO the owner of Chateau Laffite and no stranger to the wine industry) the village was renamed “Zichron Yaacov” in memory of his father Jacob. In 1985 Jonathan Tishbi, 4th generation to a family of vintners from Shefaya, just north of Zichron Yaacov, established the winery under the name “HaBaron” (Hebrew for 'the baron'), in honor of Baron Rothschild. Later on, the winery was given its current name “Tishbi”.
Tishbi produces an array of white, red, fortified and even sparkling vinos at a rather wide price range. Their entry level French Riesling is very enjoyable - light, semi dry and very aromatic, this is an excellent choice for a warm summer afternoon or as an aperitif. Tishbi’s sparkling wine is also a good option as an aperitif. Try serving with sushi or lightly fried finger food. Produced from French Colombard grapes in the traditional method, the sine is quite dry, with pleasant bubbles and gentle aromas and flavors of summer fruits leading to a clean finish.
Tishbi recently released a new vintage of their flagship vino, the Jonathan Tishbi Special Reserve 2010 – 100% Cabernet Sauvignon from vineyards in the Judean Hills and aged for 24 months in oak barrels. While still rather firm, this full bodied wine is already showing character suggesting dense aromas of dark berry fruits, plums plenty of fresh Mediterranean herbs followed by notes of black pepper and roasted coffee leading to a mouth filing finish. Will be interesting to see how the wine develops over the next few years.