Kishor wine-tasting warms hearts at Bible Lands

The event celebrated the award-winning wines produced by the special-needs Kibbutz.

The winery is staffed by members of Kishorit, a kibbutz of 175 special-needs people in the Western Galilee. (photo credit: PIERRE LEVY)
The winery is staffed by members of Kishorit, a kibbutz of 175 special-needs people in the Western Galilee.
(photo credit: PIERRE LEVY)
A wine tasting was held last week at the Bible Lands Museum in Jerusalem, featuring award-winning wines from the Kishor Winery.
These wines were produced by the members of Kishorit, a kibbutz of 175 people with special needs in the Western Galilee, where the Kishor Winery is located.
Israel’s First Lady Nechama Rivlin was among the distinguished guests who came to sip and celebrate the wine and the winery.
Amanda Weiss, the director of the Bible Lands Museum, and her husband, Tamir Freund, hosted the event, which featured live music performed by Kishorit resident Amit Cohen. Weiss told the guests that the kibbutz is an organization that she feels “so close to and cares so much about.”
Kishor Winery makes 56,000 bottles of wine a year, many of which are exported. The winery sells several types of wine: whites, reds and rosés. Among the many awards its wines have won are the prize for the best Israeli white wine for the Viognier at the Terravino International Competition in 2016 and a gold medal for the Savant Red at the same competition in 2015, while Kerem Kishor Red won a gold medal at the Israel Wine Awards in 2015.
Shira Reifman, director of development at Kishorit, spoke about the awards, saying, “The most moving for us is that the wine competitions are generally done by blind taste test. We don’t win the gold medals because they know our backstory and give us an award. They give us the gold medal because it’s really the best wine in the competition. Then when they hear our backstory, the wine is even tastier.”
A short film was screened that featured interviews with some of the Kishor staff and Kishorit residents. Kishorit is a home for life for over 170 adults with different special needs. It was established in 1997 by Yael Shilo and Shuki Levinger, and provides residential, employment, leisure and health services. Residents can work outside the kibbutz or at several kibbutz businesses that employ members. In addition to the winery, there is a dog kennel where champion schnauzers and dachshunds are bred, a communications center that produces a monthly television show for mainstream Israeli TV, a therapeutic riding stable, an organic vegetable garden, a bakery, a free-range egg farm that sells 500,000 eggs annually, the largest organic goat dairy in Israel, which produces 500,000 liters of goat milk, a cheese factory, a vineyard and a recycling center. The food and fresh produce grown in Kishorit provide for the needs of the Kishorit kitchen and are sold in the general marketplace to generate revenue for the community. In the film, residents and staff spoke of the philosophy of the kibbutz, which is to provide residents with meaningful work in a warm and accepting community.
For more information: