The Dalton Winery near Safed is offering a reward of NIS 25,000 for reliable information leading to the safe return of some 20,000 bottles of wine stolen from the company's storerooms over the weekend.
The bottles of wine, including special reserve Merlot and Cabernet, were stolen en mass apparently in the early hours of Saturday morning after thieves broke into the winery on the Dalton industrial park.
It is believed that the thieves used one or more trucks to remove the bottles of wine after they broke into storage facilities at the site. Most of the wine had not yet been marketed.
A statement issued by the company, which celebrated the tenth anniversary of its establishment this year, said that the thieves broke into the winery compound and neutralized alarm systems before loading the crates of wine onto the trucks.
The value of the bottles of wine, which are numbered and have special signs, was put at around NIS 3 million.
Company officials appealed to the public, and especially shopkeepers, to report immediately to the police any offers made to them to purchase Dalton wines at cheap prices.
"In addition to the police investigation, we are seeking the alertness and cooperation of the public and we are offering a reward of NIS 25,000 to anyone who provides reliable information that leads to the safe return of all of the merchandize to the winery," said Dalton director-general Moshe Haviv.
"With a little bit of help and alertness from members of the public who enjoy Dalton wines, we might also be able to find the thieves," said Haviv.
The Dalton Winery was established 10 years ago by the Haruni family after they immigrated to Israel from Britain. It was originally a boutique wines business that gradually grew into a much bigger enterprise.