February 23, 2015
A Leading Israeli Winemaker Rediscovers the Value of Kosher Certification; Develops Major Family Winery
NEW YORK - One of the more fascinating aspects of the annual Kosher Food and Wine Experience sponsored by Kedem (Royal Wine Corp.) is meeting some of the best winemakers in the world. This year (February 9th, Metropolitan Pavilion, Manhattan) was no exception as one winemaker, a tall charismatic figure with grey hair was certainly a draw. Israel Flam is one of those Israeli winemakers who truly needs no introduction. He was after all the chief winemaker at the famed Carmel Winery in Rishon Letzion for nearly 35 years. Israel could have retired right there with a career that any winemaker would give his right arm for, but he opted instead in 1998 to begin anew. He founded the Flam Winery and simply continued to wow wine connoisseurs with his “off the charts” wines. While his initial offerings were not under kosher supervision, the Flams, which by now included two of Israel’s sons and subsequently a daughter, added the certification some eight years ago and as Israel put it “we never looked back.” The wines have taken off and are selling very well here as well, according to Nathan Herzog of Kedem that markets the wines in the USA. With vineyards in the Upper Galilee and the Judean Hills, the Flams produce such wines as Blanc (a combination of Sauvignon Blanc and Chardonnay), Rose(a blend of Cabernet Franc, Syrah and Cabernet Sauvignon), Classico (a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Vabernet Franc, Petit Verdot and Syrah), Syrah Reserve (a floral wine), Merlot Reserve and Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve. Flam’s Noble wine made primarily with Cabernet Sauvignon with a varying blend of Petit Verdot and Merlot. No wonder that Flam’s best wine retails for as much as $90.