web analytics
April 25, 2015 / 6 Iyar, 5775
At a Glance
News & Views
Sponsored Post


Archaeologists Find Largest, Oldest Near East Wine Cellar in Israel

The Land of Milk and Honey also is the Land of Wine, not only today with wines that have won world prizes but also 3,700 years ago, according to a new discovery by a US-led archaeological team.
American and Israel archaeologists have unearthed in Israel what is believed to be the largest and older wine cellar in the Near East

American and Israel archaeologists have unearthed in Israel what is believed to be the largest and older wine cellar in the Near East
Photo Credit: Eric Cline of The George Washington University

Archaeologists have unearthed what may be the oldest — and largest — ancient wine cellar in the Near East, containing forty jars, each of which would have held fifty liters of strong, sweet wine, archaeologists from George Washington, Brandeis and Haifa universities announced late Friday,

The amount of wine estimated to have been stored in the cellar would fill approximately 3,000 modern bottles, and there probably are other wine cellars waiting to be unearthed.

The cellar was discovered in Tel Kabri, located near the northwestern coastal city of Nahariya and the site of a ruined palace of a sprawling Canaanite city in northern Israel and dating back to about 1,700 B.C.

The archaeological site is located near many of Israel’s modern-day wineries, such as Carmel Mizrachi in Zichron Yaakov, near Haifa.

“This is a hugely significant discovery — it’s a wine cellar that, to our knowledge, is largely unmatched in age and size,” said Eric Cline, chair of the Department of Classical and Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations of at The George Washington University.

He teamed up with excavation co-director Assaf Yasur-Landau, chair of the Department of Maritime Civilizations at the University of Haifa, co-directed the excavation. Andrew Koh, assistant professor of classical studies at Brandeis University, was an associate director.

Koh, an archaeological scientist, analyzed the jar fragments using organic residue analysis. He found molecular traces of tartaric and syringic acid, both key components in wine, as well as compounds suggesting ingredients popular in ancient wine-making, including honey, mint, cinnamon bark, juniper berries and resins. The recipe is similar to medicinal wines used in ancient Egypt for two thousand years.

Koh also analyzed the proportions of each diagnostic compound and discovered remarkable consistency between jars.

“This wasn’t moonshine that someone was brewing in their basement, eyeballing the measurements,” Koh noted. “This wine’s recipe was strictly followed in each and every jar.”

Yasur-Landau said, “The wine cellar was located near a hall where banquets took place, a place where the Kabri elite and possibly foreign guests consumed goat meat and wine.” The team discovered two doors leading out of the wine cellar—one to the south, and one to the west, and pending more digging in two years, it is assumed that  both doors probably lead to additional storage rooms.

A large part of the palace was destroyed approximately 3,600 years ago as a result of an earthquake or some other disaster, according to the archaeologists.

Dr. Koh told reporters that the presence of tartaric acid  means it was used for grape juice or wine, and several ingredients are the same as those found in winemaking recipes that previously have been found in ancient texts from ruins in what is now Syria,

Luscious grapes grown in Israel are recorded in the Biblical narrative of the “12 spies” who traveled from the Sinai Desert after the Exodus to the area of Hevron to report back to Moses what the People of Israel could expect when entering. The grapes and pomegranates that the spies brought back from the Hevron area supported the promise that Israel indeed is a land of “milk and honey,” but 10 of the spies also said that the local Canaanites were giants living in fortified cities. The report sent fear into the Children of Israel who rebelled against their mission, for they were punished to remain in the desert and die by the end of 40 years after leaving Egypt, except who were under the ago of 20 at the time of the Exodus and except for the two spies who tried to persuade the people that they could overcome Canaan with God’s help.

Fine wines have been become a booming industry in recent years, with the grapes of the southern Hevron Hills and the Golan Heights being used for dry wines considered some of the best in the world.

About the Author: Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu is a graduate in journalism and economics from The George Washington University. He has worked as a cub reporter in rural Virginia and as senior copy editor for major Canadian metropolitan dailies. Tzvi wrote for Arutz Sheva for several years before joining the Jewish Press.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

11 Responses to “Archaeologists Find Largest, Oldest Near East Wine Cellar in Israel”

  1. Nathan Katz says:

    Where did they get their corkscrews 3700 years ago?

  2. Unbelief caused the Israelites to not enter into God's rest. The same thing is happening today. Jesus is our rest.

  3. Loren Gee says:

    Why do you feel the need to post your nonsense on a Jewish site? We are not Christians, we do not want to be Christians and you Christians have persecuted us for nearly 2,000 years now.

    Go away and take your Christ with you. LEAVE US ALONE ALREADY!

  4. Loren Gee says:

    CliffandKim Hart – We believe in talking directly thank you very much. It was good enough for Abraham, Moses, Solomon, David and Issac, it's good enough for us too.

    From Israel it is a local call

  5. Some are waiting for His second ooming while the rest are still waiting for His first coming . This is ironical

  6. Loren Gee I apologize for the comments of evangelicals that feel it is their duty to save Jews from eternal damnation by annoying them into conversion. I'm not an evangelical, but I grew up in one of their churches, and I know how they can be. This article was on wine, however, so I'll link the evangelicals to the topic. According to my "pentecostal education" which teaches that drinking alcohol is a sin even in small quantities, Jesus and his followers only drank grape juice. I had so many moments of disbelief in some of the nonsense I was taught growing up, and to be honest, them saying that everybody back then drank grape juice, not wine, was the least of them. I heard a sunday school teacher tell the class that the the 3rd commandment (of the 10 commandments) instructs followers not to use "curse" words, so I asked him a simple question. I said, "So, you're saying that when somebody uses the word "sh*t", they're using the name of the Creator in vain? I told him that was blasphemous, and that the Creator's name is not synonymous with "sh*t". What do you expect from people who treat the first day of the week as the Sabbath, breaking another commandment?

  7. Earl Mann says:

    Loren Gee, it was also 'good enough' for Jesus… :)

  8. Loren Gee says:

    Earl Mann – it seems to me at least that for the Christians it's a matter of maturity.

    We have always sat at the adults table and talked directly.

    Christians are like children at the kids table having to have somebody speak for them.

    Very bizarre

  9. Earl Mann, the ten commandments are pretty clear that you shouldn't worship any idol or false god, including men. It also says to honor the Sabbath, which is the last day of the week, not the first. Virtually every Christian is in violation of those two commandments, and those are the "good" Christians…we won't get into all the murders and massacres committed in the name of Christ. We won't talk about how American Christians flaunt themselves in the house of the God with jewelry, make-up, and expensive clothing, including preachers who flaunt their wealth in direct violation of Paul's instructions to the church that clergy should live a life of poverty and humility . Not all Christians are hypocrites, but America is full of them. When I was a child, they told us that satanism takes religious symbols and inverts them, like an upside-down cross, but who took the week and turned the first day of the week into the last? Who took a man and turned him into a god? And explain this to me…if God is merciful, why would he make it nearly impossible for most people to get to Heaven? After Jesus, if you didn't confess your faith in Jesus, you were condemned, right? This includes people who never had the chance to hear the gospel, not to mention, the people who've spread the gospel for 2000 years were often spreading it through the use of force (murder, massacre, torture, etc.), and so why should their victims be held accountable for not trusting a religion of murderers?

Comments are closed.

Current Top Story
"Killing Jews is worship that draws us closer to Allah." That's his Jihad. What's yours? - An ad campaign sponsored by  the American Freedom Defense Initiative.
MTA Hopes to Change Rule, Ban ‘Killing Jews’ Anti-Jihad Ad
Latest News Stories
"Killing Jews is worship that draws us closer to Allah." That's his Jihad. What's yours? - An ad campaign sponsored by  the American Freedom Defense Initiative.

New York’s MTA plans to vote on a change to its rules it hopes would allow it to exclude the “Killing Jews” anti-jihad ad campaign.

Vice President Joe Biden.

Biden gleefully announced two of his three Catholic children married Jews – not thrilling his Jewish audience.

Armenian Archbishop Sevan (R) sits next to Greek Bishop Atallah, as they watch a live screening from Echmiadzin, Armenia, of the Church canonization of the genocide victims as saints, in the Armenian Quarter of Jerusalem's Old City.

In Jerusalem, the bells from 18 churches in the Old City of Jerusalem rang 100 times on Thursday evening, April 23, to remember the Armenian Genocide.

IDF soldiers - once upon a time.

The IDF has come up with an 81-second video showing 67 years of Israeli land, sea and ground soldiers in action.

Tennessee becomes the first state to formally condemn the BDS movement.

Snow fell in Tzfat (Safed) Friday morning, not enough to stick to the ground but enough to make residents wonder if they were dreaming or perhaps it is January. Several inches of snow fell on the Hermon as a rare mid-April storm faded away after blowing away Israelis’ Yom Ha’Atzmaut plans for cook-outs and hiking, […]

All polls show Clinton would win against any Republican, but has she peaked too soon?

Armenians marched with Armenian flags, signs, and torches from the Armenian Quarter of Old City as they mark the 100th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide, on April 23, 2015.

Iranian warships neared Yemen to support Houthi rebels despite the presence of US vessels in the area.

Poet Erez Biton, who was awarded the Israel Prize for Literature on Yom Ha’Atzmaut, used the occasion to warn against sponsors of the Boycott Israel movement. “Strident voices are being heard in the world including those who are challenging the very existence of the State of Israel,” he said. “There are even those among them […]

IDF tanks shelled a site in Gaza in response to the rocket(s) launched at Israel.

Cyber centers that guard unclassified networks reportedly detected the Pentagon security breach and kicked the hackers off “in a way that minimized their chances of returning.”

An American general says the US is facing a “national security” crisis over obesity among the nation’s youth.

10:22 PM Walla reports that according to an IDF source, 3 rockets were launched. At this point they do not think it was Hamas who launched them. 10:16 pm No specific terrorist group in Gaza has yet claimed responsibility for the rockets. 9:55 PM Reminder from the IDF: If you hear the Red Alert siren […]

The family of USAID development worker Dr. Warren Weinstein says they are “devastated” by the news he was killed in a CIA drone strike on Al Qaeda.

More Articles from Tzvi Ben-Gedalyahu
Hillary Clinton and Marco Rubio.

All polls show Clinton would win against any Republican, but has she peaked too soon?

Poet Erez Biton, who was awarded the Israel Prize for Literature on Yom Ha’Atzmaut, used the occasion to warn against sponsors of the Boycott Israel movement. “Strident voices are being heard in the world including those who are challenging the very existence of the State of Israel,” he said. “There are even those among them […]

More than 140,000 Israelis scoffed at blustery weather and visited national parks.

Kremlin says the lifting of the ban on selling the anti-missile systems to Iran was only a “political and legal decision.”

The one reason to make Aliyah outweighs all the arguments not to move to Israel.

The name of the Jerusalem teenager burned to death by three Jews has been added to the Victims of Terror Memorial.

The good news he is not able to control daily operations. The bad news is that he is recovering.

He thanks Jews who stand up for Israel but didn’t even hint they should make Aliyah.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/archaeologists-find-largest-oldest-near-east-wine-cellar-in-israel/2013/11/24/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: