Much like Tzora winery was a dream come true for the late Ronnie James, Galita Chocolatier is a dream come true of Galit Elpert, a young woman who has spent 3 years in Belgium studying chocolate and ice cream making. After returning to Israel and producing chocolate Pralines at home for her friends and even selling them in pop up stores around Tel Aviv, Galit stumbled across her old business plan from the time she was still studying to become a chocolatier.

The plan was to create a magical chocolate farm that will include a Café, a chocolate workshop area and a small movie theater. Today the plan has become a reality with 2 beautiful branches located in Kibutz Tzuba, close to Jerusalem and well within the Judean Hills and in Kibbutz Degania right by the Sea of Galilee on the Kinneret. The chocolate farm on the Kineret has been open since April 2007.
The Judean Hills branch of Galita Choclates is one we visit more often than the original store by the Kineret and is certainly a stop that our guests, both young and old appreciate a great deal.The “chocolate farm” as it is referred to by Galita employees, serves as a decadent Café, a chocolate and Praline shop and a chocolate workshop where both kids and adults can complete different project suited for their age and abilities. The Farm has a movie theater where kids learn about how chocolate is made, an outdoor sitting area for the Café and a work space that can accommodate up to 60 guests.

The nice thing about doing a chocolate workshop as a part of a wine tour in the Judean Hills is the fact that everyone can participate. Children have several options of which project they choose and the staff at the farm is more than happy to help along. Adults get to choose their projects as well, guaranteeing a great time and a sweet souvenir to take home.

Zeev Dunia is a former film maker turned into an artistic, eccentric wine maker who specializes in blends and varieties that we are less used to seeing in Israel. Seahorse Winery currently produces 25K bottles a year and a recent selection to Time Out Magazine’s Israel’s 10 best boutique wineries seems appropriate even though this is not the first time the winery is getting this sort of recognition. The winery has been chosen as top 10 by the late and Great Daniel Rogov as well.

The winery is not Kosher, which basically allows Dunia to stand on top of his barrels and withdraw a tasting of his 2012 Hemingway blend and put it in visitor’s glasses straight away. All the wines of the winery are named after someone, usually a s musician, film maker or poet that Ze’ev is fond of, with the exception of the winery’s white wine, a 100% Chenin Blanc aged in oak named James to commemorate the late Ronnie James, former head wine maker of Tzora Winery who was also Dunia’s wine teacher and friend.

Dunia has chosen to make wines that are off the beaten path and are not being produced by large wineries in Israel. He is producing a Zinfandel varietal, and Cote De Rhone GSM [Grenache, Syrah, Mourvèdre ] to name a few. When he is asked about what wines he produces, Dunya says he is inspired by great wines abroad. Back home he starts checking feasibility of whether it is possible to produce an Israeli take of these wines.