Explore Kosher Wine
Wineries April 24, 2018

An Interview with Malkiel Hadari of Gito Winery

By David Perelman

by Noa Ben-Tsvi of mynethodhasharon.co.il.

Malkiel Hadari, a high tech professional, had a dream to produce his own wine. He started a winery in his home, in the Gil Amal neighborhood, and became fascinated with the process. "My dream is to have people come to my winery for their Shabbat and Holiday wine shopping."

Malkiel Hadari at his Hod HaSharon home winery

Source: Malkiel Hadari

One of the most interesting home boutique wineries in Israel operates from an ordinary looking house on the sleepy Golomb Street, nestled in the Gil Amal neighborhood on the outskirts of Hod HaSharon. Malkiel Hadari, a high-tech professional, and his wife Dina, are the people behind Gito winery. "My dream is that Hod HaSharon residents will stop by our winery for a Friday or Holiday bottle of wine", says Malkiel.

Malkiel Hadari in his home winery

Source: Noa Ben Tsvi

Malkiel Hadari, 67, was born in Hod HaSharon, where he still lives. His way to wine production was no accident: they made wine and alcohol in his grandfather's house. "I've always loved and enjoyed wine", says Malkiel. "My wife, Dina, didn't drink when we met. I'd buy expensive bottles, way over our budget. Dina didn't like it and would comment on it. This gave her a wonderful idea: she signed me up for a winery school in Soreq. I surprised her and signed her up also. This way we came to know and love the world of wine making. We took more courses on wine making and entrepreneurship. Eventually, we decided to start a winery at our home. All this happened years ago."

"I went after my dream. Although it sounded crazy at the beginning, the family supported me immediately. I've converted the bedroom, the garage and the patio into a winery. It became a family business, when my three sons were helping, especially during days with heavy traffic, harvesting and bottling. The ongoing work, however, is done by my wife and myself. I am very satisfied when I see people having fun drinking my wine."

Malkiel lives an unusual life. At the crack of dawn you can find him driving to check on his vines in Kfar Pines, some 30 miles to the north. Then he drives to his office, at SAP, in Ra'anana - more than 30 miles to the south. "The cloud is my high-tech world. I move from that world to the earthy world of wine making. I love high-tech. It's a world that’s ever renewing, but so is wine making. I find wine making fascinating and full of surprises. I just love being in an interesting and renewing environment. I always dreamt of making wine, and I truly followed my dream."

Malkiel Hadari at the vineyard

Source: Dror Hadari

"I make three types of wine: red, white and rosé. There are two types of red and two types of white. I export the wine to the US, to Kfar Etzion, and to Wine Temple and Kos Braha (cup of blessing), both in Jerusalem. I’m sourcing my grapes from the Galilee and Gush Etzion, until my grapevines will be ready in two years."

"I work with Syrah, Petite Sirah, Petit Verdot, Marselan and Grenache grape varietals for red wine. For white wine I use Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, and Semillon".

"I like to blend the grape varietals and ferment them during the wine-making process. This way, the raw material becomes my personal production. I produce wine traditionally, the way they did it in the ancient times, and combine it with modern knowledge. I go along with the wine, and it's possible that the taste will change a little from one year to the next. But I believe that this is what nature provides...Wine is comprised of an array of tastes and smells, which requires a lot of work in the winery. However, the most critical aspect starts with the vines. Good grapes are the basis for good wine. To me, what’s most special about my wine is that it’s so Israeli."

What makes your wine Israeli?

My wine is crafted using local varietals, which are accessible and suitable for the Israeli climate. These varietals are light and lend themselves to wines with lower alcohol content - refreshing during our hot days. We're not in Europe, and this wine expresses “Israeliness”. This is my wine attitude, even though I believe that there isn't a right or wrong when it comes to wine."

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This article was reprinted with permission from mynethodhasharon.co.il.

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