In 1979, with a Zionist vision and strong desire to settle the southern desert, Alon and Nira Zadok packed their belongings in two suitcases and left their parent´s home in Geulim in the Sharon area and moved south to the south-western area of the Negev. At first, they settled in conquered Sinai in a magical oasis called Kadesh Barnea (Kseyma).
After the peace agreements were completed in 1980, they left their home and along with five other young friends, moved and established an agricultural settlement near the Egyptian border, in the desert´s wilderness. With no infrastructure whatsoever, the group struggled to establish a village and learned firsthand the art of desert agriculture.
The young pioneers attempted to plant all types of crops, from grapes to melons, eggplants, watermelons, tomatoes and more. Following their numerous agricultural attempts they realized that the Negev isn´t in fact a barren place where nothing can be grown. They learned back then what is now, 35 years later common knowledge – the Negev has great agricultural potential. Nowadays, the Negev is called the “Produce Granary” of Israel with about 60% of all Israeli agriculture being grown in the Negev.
Alon is a wine lover, who inherited the love for wine from his father, who used to make wine at home. This hobby was with him for years as he traveled Israel and tasted plenty of wine. Nira, who identified his love for wine, purchased an original birthday gift for him. She sent him to a wine course with Yair Heidi and Barry Sasselov. Alon fell in love with the world of wine and continued on to another program with Dr. Yair Margalit, after that he signed up for a wine-making course at Soreq Winery. Alon quickly understood that making the wine is the easier part of the equation, marketing it on the other hand, is a different story.
During that period of time, Alon partnered up with a small marketing company specializing in boutique wines, the company failed to market Alon´s wines successfully and Alon decided to take action. Alon recruited his entire family in order to establish a business; this is how the Negev´s first family-owned boutique winery was established.
From the day the winery was established (in 2000) and through 2010, the main winemaker was the father, Alon Zadok, who practiced agriculture and management of agricultural villages for most of his life. Alon has 40 years of experience and has gained a great deal of knowledge and skills in agriculture and in the agricultural field-growing business, theoretical skills but mostly practical experience. Alon participated in many courses that teach about wine, from the history of wine through growing grapevines and producing it – he learned it and fell in love with it.
As of 2010, the main winemaker of the winery is Yogev Zadok, who is Nira and Alon´s eldest son who lives in the village of Kadesh Barnea, near the winery´s vineyard.
Yogev met his wife, Eden, while completing his high school SAT tests. Their shared love for wine became a frequent topic during conversations between the couple and their time spent together turned into unique wine tasting nights. In 2006, after a need for a professional winemaker arose, the couple decided to specialize in the field of wine. They packed their bags and flew to Florence, the wine capital in the heart of Tuscany. There, throughout a period of three years the couple studied the science of wine and grapevines, in the Faculty of Agriculture. The couple returned to Israel with BAs, after practical work and an internship in Antinori Winery, the world renowned Italian wine brand. For three years, the couple lived and breathed in Italian, acquired a unique sense of style for wine which is reflected nowadays in the winery´s wines.
The wines have an Italian influence: They have less alcohol, the fruit is not as ripe and the wine is more elegant, the taste of the grapevines, fruit is more dominant than the taste of the aging process in the barrels.
The marketing work is carried out by Gilad, the youngest son and his wife Michal. With tireless work and a lot of motivation, Gilad manages to bring the wine of the winery to the shelves of selected stores and to the tables of reputable restaurants around the country.