Accompanied by our Bon Appétit Culinary Center Chef, immerse yourself in Jerusalem's rich culinary heritage by sampling your way through the tasty, often exotic offerings at a winery, two open-air markets and a traditional restaurant.
Traveling with your Bon Appétit Culinary Center Chef, you'll depart the pier and take a short drive to your first stop, the Tishbi Winery. The Tishbi family's romance with grapes and wine began in 1882 when the present generation's great-grandparents were commissioned by Baron Edmond de Rothschild to plant the first modern wine grape vineyards in Israel. After more than a century of grape growing tradition, Jonathan Tishbi founded the Tishbi Estate in1984, which produces four series of wines, each offering consistent quality and flavor, as well as value and style within its class.
Set near Zichron Yaacov, at the foot of the Carmel mountain ridge near the coast, the Tishbi Estate is surrounded by its home vineyards which enjoy the cooling breezes of the Mediterranean Sea. The Tishbi family also plants, grows and harvests premium grapes at higher elevations to the north, taking full advantage of the cool mountain night air and the long sunny Mediterranean growing season, as well as in the Negev Desert to the south, where hot arid days and cool windy nights combine with sandy soils to yield superior grapes.
To this day, proprietor Jonathan Tishbi, together with his family, personally supervises the growing, harvesting and bottling processes, tasting and evaluating each vineyard lot separately before creating final blends and award winning wines and sparkling wines. The wine store here also gives visitors a chance to purchase some of the estate's best wines.
Leaving the winery behind, you'll next drive to Jerusalem, passing architectural landmarks such as the Parliament, State Supreme High Court and Hebrew University en route to the outdoor Machane Yehuda Market, also known as the "shuk". Upon arrival, you'll have time to wander about the stands with the Chef and sample the cornucopia of mostly kosher Middle Eastern delicacies. Fresh fruits, blocks of halvah, and plates of mezze only touch upon the treats. There will also be a bit of free time for you to explore on your own before heading to Mama's Restaurant for a hearty lunch of traditional dishes.
Following lunch, a different culinary experience awaits you in the walled Old City of Jerusalem, where along with the Chef and your guide, you'll explore the Arab Market. Its stalls are laden with exotic foods, canapés and desserts ranging from flaky pastries to ice cream topped with date honey and pistachios. Stop for desert and then enjoy some free time here before re-boarding your coach for the transfer back to the pier. Your return trip has you taking in sights such as the Church of All Nations and the Mount of Olives, where you'll briefly stop for photos.
Please note: This tour includes approximately 4 1/2 hours of moderate walking/standing plus any additional walking at the guests' discretion during free time. There will be some uneven and cobblestone surfaces to negotiate as well as some steps and inclines. The tour is not available to wheelchair guests or those with mobility concerns. Weather appropriate clothing; sun cap; sunglasses; and flat, comfortable walking shoes are recommended. Shorts and sleeveless shirts are not permitted.