Golani Two Grain Debuts As First Whisky from Israel - The Whiskey Wash

Golani Two Grain Debuts As First Whisky from Israel

By Nino Marchetti / July 26, 2016

Golani Two Grain WhiskyLooking across the spectrum of whisky making nations around the world, the most common known ones include the USA, Scotland, Japan and Canada, among others. There are many other countries already in the game, or just getting into it, however, with Israel being one of the latest. A distillery there, Golan Heights, has just debuted into the American market its first release, known as Golani Two Grain Whisky.

Golan Heights Distillery, according to Forward, is a very young distillery that’s the dream of a former real estate professional out of Canada who was born in France and raised in Canada, Israel and the US. You can learn a lot about the early stages of his operation from a crowdfunding campaign he ran recently, but in essence his is a very small operation that uses as its water source fresh spring water from Israel’s Eden Spring.

The first bottling out of the gate for Golan Heights is Golani Two Grain Whisky. Information from the distillery itself indicates the whisky is distilled in traditional copper pot stills from wheat and barley, two grains said to grow “wildly in abundance throughout the Golan Heights” (the barley is reported to be imported for this whisky, however). It is then triple wood aged for no longer then a year in New American Oak, Cabernet Oak and Chardonnay Oak casks – the latter of two which come from a nearby Israeli winery – at a height of 1,300 feet.

Golani, bottled at a rather mellow 80 proof, is said as well to be of sour mash origins and also to have matured faster then whisky in Scotland because of the much more hot climate. The first small release of this expression here in the US is just now rolling out through New York from what I can see, with a price point that’s dropping between $40 and $50 on average for a 750 ml bottle.