Jewish National Fund’s Culinary, Wine, and Music Tour celebrated its fifth year by bringing 20 Americans to Israel this past June to personally witness the latest in the country’s booming food scene. The group, comprised of business leaders, lawyers, physicians, and other health care workers, traded in work clothes to don aprons and chef’s hats for a 10-day immersion into the daily life of Israeli chefs. Working side-by-side with some of Israel’s leading and celebrated culinary masters such as Assaf Granit, the distinguished winner of Israel’s Iron Chef competition and co-owner of the iconic Jerusalem restaurant Machneyuda, and Nir Zook, an Israeli superstar TV chef and owner of Cordelia restaurant, Noa Bistro, and Jaffa Bar, participants toured the shuk (outdoor market) and learned how to select the premier ingredients for sumptuous and delectable meals. Words cannot describe the brightly colored fruits and vegetables freshly picked from farms across Israel, and the many stalls of delectable treats that leave you wanting more.
Coupled with food prep and lavish plating presentations, each meal was a once-in-a-lifetime gastronomic experience. Authenticity was the key to this year’s tour. Israel’s vibrant multi-cultural and multi-religious landscapes were explored by all the senses, especially through touch and taste as the participants chopped and diced alongside Israel’s leading chefs and wine sommeliers, who offered insight into the country’s growing boutique wineries and the fine pairing of wine to food. Further enriching the tour were iconic coffee roasting, wine bottling, and dessert making adventures, while cultural diversity was enjoyed via Israel’s vast and unique musical sounds and instruments.
For many, the Culinary, Wine, and Music Tour has become an annual journey and an opportunity to enhance their personal kitchen repertoire. Bonding through their mutual love of fine cooking, the group has expanded enough to attract more than 110 new people to Israel, with JNF showing them firsthand its miraculous work being done throughout the nation. The tour has left participants feeling connected to Israel, rich Jewish history, and, of course, to Jewish kitchens.
If your taste buds and knife skills are in need of an overhaul, join JNF in Spring 2017 to team up with a new crop of restauranteurs and experience the artisanal creations and bold cuisines of Israel and the Middle East.
For more information on JNF’s Culinary, Wine, and Music Tour, contact Diane Scar, National Campaign Director, at 410.486.3317 ext. 840, or at firstname.lastname@example.org.