Novi recepti

Pijenje košer: kako je košer vino postalo norma

Pijenje košer: kako je košer vino postalo norma

Dok se Jevreji širom svijeta pripremaju za novu godinu i Velike svete dane - Rosh Hashanah i Yom Kippur - postoji jedan vrlo važan dio stola: vino. A na ovim posebnim jelima košer vino najčešće prati hrana. No, unatoč drevnim korijenima košer vina (koji seže sve do biblijskih vremena), neki prave grimasu pri pomisli da popiju čašu. Ali šta ako je košer vino ono što je standard vinara širom sveta?

Košerstvo "nije ništa novo", kaže Christopher Sawyer, međunarodno priznati somelijer i savjetnik vinskog imenika likelii.com. "Ono što je zanimljivo je da košer vino [ide], prema današnjim standardima, u istom smjeru kojim ide i organsko vino: uzgoj organskog grožđa, bez dodavanja proizvedenih sastojaka. To je ono na čemu se cijela ta filozofija iza košer vina zasniva hiljadama godina. "

Šta je to što razlikuje košer vino od nekošer vina za trpezom? Suprotno uvriježenom mišljenju, kaže direktor degustacije vina u Časopis Wine Enthusiast Lauren Buzzeo, nema male razlike. "Tehnike koje se koriste tokom proizvodnje gotovo su identične; postoje samo neke smjernice koje se moraju poštivati ​​kako bi se postigao košer status", kaže ona.

Za početak, tu je pitanje sastojaka: košer vina ne sadrže aditive, niti bilo šta što se smatra „trayfe“ - ili neprikladno, kaže Lisa Alcalay Klug, autorica Kul Jevrejin i njena nova knjiga, objavljena u oktobru, Hot Mamalah. To uključuje komercijalne kvasce i sredstva za fino čišćenje životinja, poput želatine, stakla ili bjelanjaka. Međutim, iako svi sastojci u košer vinu moraju imati košer certifikat, većina sastojaka vina već je košer, kaže Buzzeo.

A tu je i pitanje samih vinara. Tokom cijelog procesa proizvodnje vina, košer vinom mogu rukovati samo Jevreji koji poštuju subotu-od berbe grožđa do fermentacije i flaširanja. Vino mora nadgledati i strojar, koji nadgleda proizvodnju. Međutim, postoji jedna kategorija košer vina s kojom se mogu baviti ne-Židovi-a to je vino koje svim košer gutljajima daje lošu reputaciju. Vino "Mevushal", doslovno znači "kuhano", je vino kuhano ili pasterizirano. To je ono što mu daje često gumasto, dinstano voće, dinstano voće koje mnogi od nas povezuju s košer vinima-yikes. "Staromodno, slatko košer vino, poput Manischewitza, kuhano je ili pasterizirano, pa su iz tog razloga mnoga košer vina imala loš rep", kaže Klug. "No posljednjih godina, s uvođenjem gurmanskih košer vina u SAD -u, Izraelu i inozemstvu, taj korak se napušta ili zamjenjuje flash pasterizacijom", kaže Klug.


11 Kosher-for-Pashaver vina koje#8217ll zapravo želite piti

Bez uvrede za naše prijatelje u Manischewitzu! Volimo praviti charoset s njim, ali concord grožđe, košer-za-pashalno vino može biti samo slatko slatko. A kada biste trebali popiti četiri šolje toga tokom sedera (a vjerovatno i mnogo više tokom ostatka sedmice), to je puno slatkoće.

Umjesto toga, rabin Josh Franklin iz hrama Beth Elohim u Wellesleyu, Massachusetts, predlaže otvaranje boce nečega drugog. “Optima za jedno od mnogih popularnih izraelskih vina koja su se probila na tržište,##8221 kaže on.

Nastavite čitati njegove prijedloge.

Kosher-for-Pashaver vina koje ’ll zapravo želite piti

Ako želite razmetati

Ako ste voljni potrošiti 20 do 30 USD po boci

Ako želite jeftino vino

Gdje možete pronaći ova vina?

Ovisno o tome gdje živite — ili veličini trgovine —, vaša lokalna vinoteka može imati ograničen izbor. Ili idite na Internet i provjerite KosherWine.com, gdje možete naručiti gotovo sve na ovoj listi i više. Tu je i SkyviewWine.com, koji nudi besplatnu dostavu u New Yorku i isporučuje se drugdje uz malu naknadu.

Zašto vam treba toliko vina?

Zamislite četiri čaše vina kao židovske interpunkcijske znakove u cijelom Sederu. Neki ljudi kažu da predstavljaju četiri važne žene u priči o Pesachu, dok drugi kažu da predstavljaju četiri različita elementa slobode.

Što god oni predstavljali, treba ih konzumirati polako i zavaljeni, jer su Židovi sada slobodni i piju slobodno. Slatko vino je tradicionalno, ali svako vino ili sok od grožđa su prihvatljivi sve dok su označeni kao košer za Pashu, što znači da su napravljeni prema jevrejskom rabinskom zakonu.

Šta čini vino košer za Pashu?

Većina košer vina već je odobrena za Pashu, ali provjerite etiketu da biste bili sigurni. Da bi vino bilo košer, ono mora sadržavati samo košer sastojke, a nakon što se grožđe ubere i donese na drobljenje, samo Jevreji koji poštuju šabat mogu biti uključeni u pravljenje vina.

Tu je i vino Mevushal, s kojim mogu rukovati i posluživati ​​nejevreji i koje se samo vrlo brzo zagrijava u procesu koji se naziva flash pasterizacija. Vino mevušal prihvatljivo je i za pashalni seder.

Koje je bolje — crno ili bijelo vino?

Mnogi Židovi radije piju crno vino za vrijeme Seder -a iz nekoliko razloga, a jedan je da podsjeća na janjeću krv koja je razmazana na dovratnicima kao znak da Bog pređe preko tih domova u Izraelu. Naravno, Pasha traje sedam ili osam dana (neki reformski Židovi slave samo sedam), pa čak i ako se vaša porodica želi držati crvenog za Sedere, još uvijek postoje mnoge druge noći, tokom kojih možete uživati ​​u boci košer -a -za Pashu bijela.


Košer vino i Košer za pashalno vino

Uz mnoštvo pashalnih pravila o hrani dolaze i smjernice za alkohol. Arheološki dokazi pokazuju da se vino koristilo u judaizmu u cijelom starom Izraelu u tradicionalne i vjerske svrhe. U SAD -u je košer vino na kraju postalo povezano sa slatkim Concord vinima iz vinarija sa osnivačima jevrejskih useljenika.

Košer vino je vino od grožđa koje se proizvodi prema vjerama i prehrani Judaizma. Da bi vino bilo košer, mora se stvarati pod neposrednim nadzorom rabina, pri čemu će samo jevrejski mužjaci koji prate subotu, dodirivati ​​grožđe iz faze drobljenja kroz flaširanje.

Dok sva vina zahtijevaju neku vrstu plijesni (kvasca) za fermentaciju, košer za pashalno vino mora biti napravljen od kalupa koji nije uzgojen na kruhu (poput šećera ili voća) i mora isključiti nekoliko uobičajenih konzervansa, poput kalijevog sorbata. Vino koje je košer za Pashu ne može uključivati chametz, koji uključuje žito, hljeb i tijesto. Najkošernije vino koje se prodaje i komercijalno ima pečat odobrenja hechsher. Ovo obično dolazi od košer certifikacijske agencije.


Pitajte stručnjaka: Košer vino i Košer vino Mevušal

Pitanje: Kad uđem u lokalnu vinsku trgovinu, ponekad vidim boce s oznakom košer, a ponekad košer mevushal. Moj vinski momak kaže da mevušalske stvari nisu dobre. Šta je rsquos mevushal i zašto je loše?
& ndashDavid, Boston

Odgovor: L & rsquoChaim, David! Za odgovor na ovo pitanje potrebna je lijepa čaša vina. Nemate ništa protiv ako kucam i pijuckam, zar ne?

Da bi vino bilo košer, naravno da mora sadržavati samo košer sastojke. A prema tradicionalnom jevrejskom zakonu, nakon što se grožđe ubere i donese na drobljenje, samo Jevreji koji poštuju Šabat mogu biti uključeni u pravljenje vina. Od drobljenja do bocanja, košer vinom moraju rukovati isključivo promatrači Jevreji.

Zašto stroga pravila samo za Jevreje? Budući da su u prošlosti pagani često koristili vino u svojim ponudama idolskim bogovima. Kad se dogodilo nešto dobro, izlijte malo vina na zemlju kao simboličnu zahvalu (to jest, ako ste obožavali idole). Rabini koji su postavili pravila za košer vino željeli su osigurati da Židovi nikada ne dobiju čašu vina koja je bila povezana s idolopokloničkom ponudom, pa su zahtijevali da samo Jevreji budu uključeni u rukovanje košer vinom.

Čak i nakon postavljanja ovih pravila, neki su se ljudi zabrinuli da je, ako ste na židovskom vjenčanju popili lijepu čašu košer chardonnaya, & rsquos moguće da je nejevrejski konobar ili konobarica možda prolila dio vašeg chardonnaya u idolopokloničkoj praksi, leđa je bila okrenuta. Rjesenje: Mevushal vino. (Shulhan Arukh, 123 godina)

Mevushal (doslovno & ldquoco kuhano & rdquo) vino je zagrijano do te mjere da ga obožavatelji idola ne bi & koristili u svoje zle svrhe. Ispostavilo se da su čak i obožavaoci idola imali standarde za svoje vino. Ne bi koristili vino za ponudu da je kuhano jer vrenje uklanja veliki okus. Tako su rabini odlučili da bi, kako bi se izbjegla mogućnost da Židov ikad pije vino povezano s idolopoklonstvom, nejevrejin mogao poslužiti samo kuhano vino.

Danas ljudi ne piju puno za bogove. Ipak, zbog prethodnih presuda različitih halahičkih vlasti, nekim ljudima je neugodno što im nejevrejin toči čašu košer vina. Tako se vino mevušal često poslužuje na događajima na kojima će nežidovi vršiti pretakanje i posluživanje vina. Ovaj stav, da se služi samo mevushal vinu kada će služiti nejevreji, norma je među pravoslavnim Jevrejima i onima koji slijede propise Odbora za židovsko pravo i standarde Konzervativnog pokreta.

Dobra vijest je da pravljenje mevušala vina više ne podrazumijeva zapravo kuhanje bilo čega. Razgovarao sam sa Scottom Shumakerom, vinskim menadžerom na kosherwine.com, i rekao mi je da se vino kako bi se ovih dana nazvalo mevushal & rsquos vrlo brzo zagrijalo u procesu koji se zove flash pasterizacija.

Crno vino se zagrijava do 180 stupnjeva Fahrenheita (bijelo vino dobiva nešto nižu temperaturu) manje od minute, a zatim se vrlo brzo hladi kako bi se ograničila količina štete koju toplina može nanijeti na arome u vinu . Ovaj postupak je zasnovan na odgovoru rabina Moshe Feinsteina koji je zaključio da se pasteriziranje može računati kao nešto mešušalo. Postoje i drugi rabinski autoriteti koji se razlikuju od ovog mišljenja, ali u Americi je danas najčešće zauzeto mišljenje rabina Feinsteina.

Vaš vinski momak je u pravu da mnogi ljudi ne misle visoko o mevušalnim vinima, ali Scott je moj vinski tip i preporučio je posebnu rezervu Cabernet Sauvignon vinarije Segal i posebnu rezervu Binyamina Cabernet Sauvignon, oboje su mevušal i prodaju se za oko 20 dolara po boci. Najbolja košer vina na tržištu ovih dana nisu aren & rsquot mevushal, ali Scott kaže da postoje neke prilično dobre mevushal opcije. Vjerovao bih mu na riječ, ali zaista, možda bih trebao napraviti neko uzorkovanje samo da budem siguran.


Šta se kuha s temperaturom vina

U posljednjem nastavku razgovarali smo o zabrani Yayin Nesech (vino dotaknuo idolopoklonik). Kuhano ili mevushal vino ne podliježe zabrani Yayin Nesech, ali postoje različita mišljenja o tome koja temperatura halahički predstavlja „kuhanje“. Glavna mišljenja i njihovi izvori bit će predstavljeni u ovom nastavku.

Gemara (Masechta Avodah Zara 30a), komentirajući izjavu Mišne 29b da je vino nejevrejina zabranjeno, kaže:

Šmuel i Avleit (Raši: On je obožavao idole.) Sjedili su zajedno i posluženo im je kuhano vino. Avleit (zabrinut da vino ne bi trebao biti košer) maknuo je ruke (s prostora u blizini vina). Šmuel mu je tada rekao (da nije potrebno da se suzdrži od dodirivanja vina jer su rabini učili da kuhano vino ne podliježe zabrani Yayin Nesech.

U Ranovom komentaru na Rif 2 citira se Raavad u ime Rav Hai Gaon 3 koji se smatra da je vino kuhano čim vino proključa. Zatim citira Ramban 4 da se vino smatra kuhanim kada nekom vinu (ispari i) počne nedostajati dio njegove količine. Ran (kao i Rashba 5) zaključuje da možda nema argumenata, jer su oba kriterija ista, jer i kada ključa, isparava. Rosh 6 donosi samo prvo mišljenje (budući da drugo mišljenje vjerojatno nije vidio) i uspoređuje ga sa zakonima kuhanja na Shabbosu gdje je kriterij “Yad Soledes Bo”, (Ruka će biti opečena (uklonjena instinktivno) pri ovoj temperaturi vode). Postoje različita mišljenja o prikladnoj temperaturi za ovaj kriterij, u rasponu od 112-160 ° F.

(Roš zatim ulazi u raspravu o tome je li razlog ovoj zabrani obeshrabrivanje društvenog pijenja i mogućih odnosa između Židova i nejevreja ili se temelji na zakonima žrtvovanja u Hramu i zabranama obožavanja idola Postoje i duge rasprave mnogih komentara o ovom pitanju, kao i razumijevanje zašto je kuhano vino dopušteno. Neki kažu da degradira vino, neki kažu da je kuhanje neobično, a neki kažu da je izvorni izvor zabrana je bila samo za nekuhano vino. Ovaj članak neće moći razjasniti ova pitanja, ja ih samo potičem da vam pobudi apetit da nastavite s istraživanjem i steknete uvid u neka od kasnije spomenutih mišljenja.)

Gore navedena mišljenja temelj su odluke Bais Yosefa u 7 Shulchan Oruch 8: Kada se smatra kuvanim vinom? Kad proključa na vatri. The Shach 9, in Sifsei Cohen, njegov komentar na Shulchan Oruch, zatim komentariše: Kada smanji njegovu količinu (isparava), a on to citira iz Rashbe i Ran -a.

U današnjoj vinarskoj industriji vino, točnije sok od grožđa, pasterizira se ubrzo nakon cijeđenja i fermentacije uzrokovane uvođenjem komercijalnog kvasca. Pasterizacija u ovoj fazi pomaže da se osigura da će svaka boca vina u proizvodnji imati isti okus, dajući potrošačima dosljedno iskustvo.

Kako bi grožđe postiglo optimalan kvalitet svake godine, potrebni su određeni nivoi vlage, sunčeve svjetlosti i temperature. Ako su one veće ili niže od idealnih, plodovi neće postići optimalnu kvalitetu. Slijedom toga, kvaliteta vina trpi jer razina kiselosti ili slatkoće (postotak briksa) grožđa nije bila optimalna.

Hašem je, u svojoj neograničenoj ljubaznosti i mudrosti, stvorio grožđe s kvalitetom nošenja vlastitog (ambijentalnog) kvasca. Ovo se ponekad naziva cvjetanje grožđa ili rumenilo. Ovaj kvasac uzrokuje fermentaciju (i stvaranje mjehurića) soka od grožđa, pretvarajući njegov šećer (slatkoću) u alkohol. Ovo ne treba miješati sa slatkoćom koja se daje u nekim vinima. Taj slatki okus ostaje ono što se zaustavi nakon procesa fermentacije prije nego se sav šećer pretvori u alkohol.

Sredinom 19. stoljeća, poznati naučnik, gospodin Louis Pasteur otkrio je da postoji mnogo živih organizama koji mogu pokvariti ili fermentirati vino. 1856. Pasteur je pozvan da istraži zašto se vino lokalnog vinogradara pokvarilo. Došao je do otkrića da je bakterija živ organizam pa bi, ako bi se sok od grožđa skuhao na 60 – 100 ° C (140 – 212 ° F), to ubilo sve bakterije. Nakon toga, ako je vinogradar želio fermentirati vino, morao bi uvesti novi, uzgojeni kvasac kako bi sok pretvorio u vino.

Ova ideja ubijanja bakterija (i uvođenja kvasca) široko je rasprostranjena u industriji vina i mlijeka, kao i u proizvodnji drugih fermentiranih proizvoda. To je također temelj sigurnosti hrane koji se danas primjenjuje u većini kompanija kako bi pomogao u kontroli širenja neželjenih bakterija i uvelike pridonio vijeku trajanja proizvoda.

Standardni postupak u vinskoj industriji danas je pasterizirati sav sok od grožđa na 165 ° F, a zatim dodati kvasac, osiguravajući da rastu samo zdrave bakterije i da cijelo vino ima ujednačen okus. (Čak i nakon zagrijavanja na 165 ° F neke bakterije se mogu ponovno probuditi tijekom fermentacije, pa neki znanstvenici preporučuju zagrijavanje na 212 ° F.) Neki manji vinogradari ne pasteriziraju svoj sok i odlučuju pažljivo ga nadzirati te dodati ili promijeniti kemikaliju aditiva po potrebi.

Zbog ozbiljne zabrane Yayin Nesech-a, očito je lakše koristiti kuhano vino, budući da se vinom mogu baviti ne-šomerski Šabosi Jevreji, pa čak i, l'havdil, ne-Jevreji, međutim neki ga smatraju više mehudarom nekuhano vino za Kiddush, a posebno za Pesach Seder.

Reb Moshe Feinstein zaključio je 1 da se sok od grožđa kuhan na 165 ° F smatra kuhanim vinom. Objašnjava da je mišljenje Rav Hai Gaona da se, čim se skuha, smatra kuhanjem, slično zakonima Shabbosa, gdje se smatra kuhanjem na temperaturi od Yad Soledes Bo. On dalje kaže da u to vrijeme počinje i isparavanje. Kasnije, u svom četvrtom seferu Čak i HaEzer, Reb Moshe dodaje nekoliko riječi pred kraj siman 108 koji kaže da sok mora doseći 175 ° F da bi se uzeo u obzir mevushal, ali ne objašnjava zašto je promijenio zahtjev sa 165 ° F na 175 ° F.

Tačna temperatura ključanja vina ovisi o nadmorskoj visini, kao i postotku alkohola u vinu. Kao što je napomenuto, vino ključa na nižoj temperaturi od vode i stoga će mješavina s 12% alkohola prokuhati kasnije od vina sa 16% alkohola. Oni koji prihvataju nižu temperaturu za mevushal vjerovatno bi ukazalo na destilaciju gdje kuhanje počinje na nižoj temperaturi. Dobro je poznato da je Tzelemer Rov, OB ”M, (koji je ranije certificirao vina Kedem i Royal) smatrao da se vino mora zagrijati na 190 ° F kako bi se smatralo mevushal. Ovu politiku usvojili su Kedem i mnoge druge vinarije. The uredu zahtijeva minimalnu temperaturu od 86 ° C (186,8 ° F).

Relativno nedavne inovacije ultra- i flash-pasterizacije, gdje se sok pasterizira na različitim razinama zagrijavanja nekoliko sekundi i odmah hladi, pomažu u smanjenju razgradnje uzrokovane pasterizacijom. Pošto se pasterizacija vrši u zatvorenom sistemu pod pritiskom, para ne može iscuriti u atmosferu i ispariti. Halahično pitanje je utječe li to na Rambanovo mišljenje da se količina tekućine mora smanjiti kako bi se mogla smatrati kuhanom.

Široka upotreba ultra- i flash-pasterizacije u zatvorenim sistemima pod tlakom u vinskoj industriji donijela je novi set pitanja o tome je li sačuvana prvotna namjera kuhanja vina, ocrtana u Gemari.

Rav Elyashiv, OB ”M, postavio je pitanje da li se kuhanje vina smatra“ neuobičajenom pojavom ”, jer se jedno od mišljenja koje dopušta kuhano vino temelji na činjenici da je većina vina u to vrijeme bila neobrađena. Budući da je pasterizacija sada norma u industriji sokova od grožđa i vina, Rav Elyashiv se zapitao može li se kuhanje i dalje smatrati heter izbjeći Yayin Nesech.

Rav Shlomo Zalman Auerbach, OB ”M, ispitao je 11 da li se okus promijenio tokom procesa kuhanja. The heter za kuhano vino, prema nekim mišljenjima, posljedica je lošije kvalitete vina nakon što se skuhalo. Danas, kada se kuhanjem vino ne zamjećuje, a neka od najbolje ocijenjenih košer vina su mevushal, the heter možda ne važi.

Rav Ben Tzion Abba Shaul tvrdi 12 da vino mora ispariti da bi se moglo uzeti u obzir mevushal. Nedostatak isparavanja u sistemu zatvorene petlje mogao bi poništiti heter.

Oni koji dopuštaju pasterizaciju u zatvorenoj petlji tvrdili bi da kada je petlja pasterizacije zatvorena, ona samo prisiljava isparene plinove da se pretvore u tekućinu. Tečnost se zaista skuhala do nivoa isparavanja, ali vodovodni sistem i tehnologija prisiljavaju isparavanje da se ponovo uključi u smjesu i vrati u tečno stanje. The uredu ne dopušta potpuno zatvoren sistem, mora postojati način za izlazak neke pare. Što se tiče nedostatka degradacije i trenutnog zajedništva pasterizacije, original takana napravljen je samo da zabrani nekuhano vino. Nikada nije bilo predviđeno da će se uredba morati promijeniti ako se vrijeme i okolnosti promijene i kuhanje postane uobičajeno.

Neke boce košer vina nose oznaku "mefustar”(Pasterizovano). Oni koji slijede p’sak Rav Elyashiv, Rav Auerbach ili Rav Abba Shaul možda neće smatrati ta vina mevushal međutim, prema halacha, Rav Ovadia Yosef, OB ”M, tvrdio je 13 da se pasterizirano vino također smatra mevushal.

Zbog ozbiljne zabrane Yayin Nesech očito je lakše koristiti kuhano vino, budući da vinom mogu rukovati Jevreji ne-šomeri šabosi, pa čak i l’havdil, nejevreji međutim smatra se više mehudar neki će koristiti nekuhano vino za Kiddush, a posebno za Pesach Seder.

Naši proroci nam govore da vino jeste M’Sameach Elokim v’Anashim (ima sposobnost da donese mnogo sreće Svemogućem kao i ljudima) ako se pravilno koristi. Zaslužimo da doživimo mnogo sreće i radosti u svom privatnom i porodičnom životu, kao i u duhovnom životu!

Nadam se da je ovo pomoglo u otklanjanju nekih zbunjujućih mišljenja o preradi košer vina. Ovaj je članak namijenjen obrazovnim svrhama. Kao i u svim pitanjima vezanim za Halaču, posavjetujte se sa svojim lokalnim pravoslavnim rabinom kako biste utvrdili koje mišljenje treba slijediti.

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pojašnjenje:

U svom prethodnom članku objasnio sam da se drobljeno grožđe može kupiti od nejevreja ako grožđe i vino nisu odvojeni. Kada sok počne teći, sok može postati Yayin Nesech i njima mora rukovati Jevrejin Shamer Shabbos.

Neki od čitalaca su me zamolili da to dodatno pojasnim.

Kada kupujemo grožđe u maloprodaji, obično prvo provjeravamo da li je grožđe zdrobljeno. Ako kupujemo kutiju grožđa, obično dolazi u drvenom sanduku koji štiti grožđe od drobljenja. Čak i da je grožđe zdrobljeno, to ipak ne bi predstavljalo halahičku poteškoću, jer bi se tekućina ispuštala iz rupa u sanduku. Ne bi ostalo ni soka.

Kada veliki proizvođač vina kupuje grožđe, ono se obično isporučuje u torbicama ili kamionima. Tote je obično plastična posuda dimenzija 6'x6'x6 'koja nema rupe za drenažu, što omogućava proizvođaču da koristi sok koji curi. Budući da je svo grožđe pakovano zajedno u jednu posudu i teži oko pola tone, težina smrvi grožđe i prisili dio tekućine da iscuri. Naravno, isto vrijedi i za kamion grožđa.

Halahički, sve dok se sok pomiješa s grožđem i uopće ne odvoji, ne smatra se vinom. Zbog toga Mishna (Avodah Zara, Daf 55a) kaže da nam je dozvoljeno da kupujemo drobljeno grožđe od nejevreja.

Čim se sok odvoji od grožđa, njime mora rukovati isključivo Jevrejin Shamer Shabbos. Primjer Gemare je "gomilanje na humku". Ako se svo grožđe (sve krutine) naslaga visoko na nasip, ostavljajući tekućinu da teče u blizini (čak i prije prosijavanja), ta se tekućina tretira kao vino.

Stoga, ako tote ili kamion isporučuje ne-Židov, to bi bilo dozvoljeno (pod uslovom da se njime pravilno rukuje, kako ćemo objasniti) jer se grožđe i sok nisu odvojili. Prilikom prevrtanja tote ili kamiona radi pražnjenja grožđa i soka u mašine za preradu, može doći do problema. Pri prevrtanju tote ili kamiona, prirodno, čvrste tvari će se prvo izliti. Na samom kraju bit će nekoliko sekundi u kojima će u posudi biti samo ostaci tekućine. U ovoj sekundi tečnost može postati Stam Yaynom, ili nekošer. Kasnije, kada se ovaj sok izlije na grožđe, cijela će hrpa postati nekošerna. Stoga samo Šomer Shabbos Jevrejin treba da izvrši kontrole kako bi prevrnuo kontejnere.

Osim toga, stroj za mashgiach bi trebao paziti da radnici ne prelijevaju jednu tote/kamion u drugu na polju, jer to može uzrokovati isti halahični problem. Na kraju, mashgiach mora paziti da se grožđe koje se zdrobi i testira na polju odbaci jer se sok halahički smatra vinom. To potencijalno može uzrokovati da svo grožđe postane košer.

1. Rabbeinu Nissim (1320-1380) iz Gerone, Španija.
2. Rabin Yitzchok Alfasi (1013-1103). Živio je u Alžiru, Fezu, a zatim u Španiji.
3. Bio je na čelu velike Talmudske akademije u Pumpedesiji (sada dio Bagdada u Iraku. Živio 939-1038.
4. Nachmanides, rabin Moshe Ben Nachman (1194-1270) iz Gerone, Španija.
5. Rabin Shlomo ben Aderes (1235-1310) iz Barcelone, Španija.
6. Rabbeinu Asher (1250-1327) iz Kelna u Rimu i zatim u Toledu u Španiji.
7. Rabin Yosef Caro (1488-1575), autor Shulchan Orucha, koji je živio u Španiji, Portugalu i Tzfasu u Izraelu.
8. Yoreh Deah, Siman 123, S’if 3.
9. Reb Shabsi Cohen (1621-1662) iz Litvanije, a zatim Moravske.
10. Igros Moshe, Yoreh Deah, tom 3, siman 31.
11. Minchas Shlomo, tom 1, broj 25.
12. Oh L'Tzion
12. Yabia Omer, Yoreh Deah sv. 8/15.


Pasha: košer vino za ljubitelje vina

Košer vino se dramatično poboljšalo u posljednjoj deceniji, a sada najbolje od njega može zauzeti svoje mjesto pored najboljeg bez košer vina. Ovih dana proizvođači košer vina tvrde da njihova vina više nisu samo za Pashu.

Tradicionalno, košer vino nije bilo dobro vino. Većina Jevreja koji su bježali iz istočne Evrope prije 100 godina došli su ovamo preko ostrva Ellis. A jedino košer vino proizvedeno na istočnoj obali bilo je sirupasto desertno vino na bazi grožđa Concord. Kao rezultat toga, “košer vino” je značilo nešto bolesno slatko što se nije slagalo ni s jednom hranom, ali ga je morao konzumirati po Sederskom ediktu.

Pasha Seder je općenito sretan obrok u kojem su djeca bitan dio usluge. Tako su djeca i unuci istočnoevropskih Jevreja odrasli uz ovu vrstu košer vina. I premda mnogi od ovih Jevreja druge i treće generacije ostatak godine piju samo suho stolno vino, nastavljaju trpjeti „Tradiciju četvrtaste boce“ (tj. Manischewitz Concord) za vrijeme Seder-a.

"Postoji izreka da ako je košer, ne može biti dobro", kaže Peter Stern, konsultujući se sa vinarima za liniju košer vina Baron Herzog. „To se dešava stalno. Pretpostavljam da je jedini način (steći poštovanje) degustacije na slijepo. "

Slepa degustacija dokazala je to pre nekoliko nedelja. Na međunarodnom takmičenju vina New World u San Bernardinu, košer vino se pokazalo najboljim u svojoj kategoriji. Baron Herzog Chenin Blanc 1993. osvojio je zlatnu medalju i nagradu za najboljeg Chenin Blanca.

Ostali osvajači košer zlatne medalje na ovom događaju bili su Herzog White Zinfandel 1993., 1993. Weinstock White Zinfandel i 1992. Weinstock Chardonnay. Srebrna medalja pripala je Hagafenovom bijelom stolnom vinu iz 1993., mješavini chardonnaya i rizlinga.

Ernie Weir, predsjednik Hagafena, priznaje da je vinariju započeo (s bivšim partnerima Zachom Berkowitzom, Normom Millerom i Reneom di Rosom) 1979. godine zbog nedostatka košer vina proizvedenog u Sjedinjenim Državama i općenito teškog stanja proizvedenog košer vina drugdje.

„Osetio sam da postoji element kulturnog ponosa koji se može podstaći“, kaže on. No, kako je vrijeme odmicalo i istraživao je različite načine proizvodnje i certificiranja košer vina, počeo je vjerovati da može napraviti vino koje je jednako bilo kojem kosher vinu.

Osim nekoliko tajnovitih pravila o čistoći i o tome tko može što učiniti s grožđem i vinom, jedno je ključno pravilo da vino mora biti mevushal, ili univerzalno košer (tako da ne gubi svoj košer status ako ga služi nepravoslavna osoba), mora se zagrijavati tokom proizvodnje-tehnika koja bi u prošlosti uništila aromu svakog finog vina. Takva vina bila su šire prodana od košer vina koja nisu bila pasterizirana, ali neki proizvođači, među njima i Hagafen, smatrali su da je proces zagrijavanja previše štetan i odbili su ga.

Međutim, u posljednjih nekoliko godina postalo je moguće napraviti a mevushal vino koristeći malo čarobnjaštva visoke tehnologije. Ova tehnika, odobrena od Unije pravoslavnih rabina iz New Yorka. poziva da se sok od grožđa bijelog vina prije fermentacije zagrije na 175 stupnjeva, pasterizirajući tekućinu. Sok se zatim brzo hladi i provodi tradicionalna fermentacija.

Čini se da ovaj proces zapravo poboljšava neka vina, kaže baron Herzog's Stern, najbolji savjetnik za košer-vino u tom poslu (također je pomogao u izradi izvrsnih košer vina za tri izraelska branda, Yarden, Golan i Gamla).

Weir je takođe bio ubeđen. Počeo je flash-pasterizirati vina Hagafen 1993.

Drugi kalifornijski proizvođač košer vina, Gan Eden u okrugu Sonoma, proizvodi samo ne- mevushal vina. Budući da ova vina neće zadržati svoj košer status ako ih poslužuje nepravoslavni Židov, vina se ne koriste za ugostiteljske događaje kao što su vjenčanja ili bar micve, ako poslužitelji nisu pravoslavni.

Košer vino iz Izraela ima loš rekord, ali Stern kaže da su veliki uspjesi napravljeni u izraelskom košer vinu u posljednjih šest do osam godina.

"Evolucija počinje grožđem", kaže on. "Nakon što su Golanske visoravni zauzete u ratu 1967., tamo je posađeno grožđe, ali jedini kupac je bila (velika zadružna vinarija) Carmel." Sva su vina bila mevushal , ali tehnologija je još uvijek bila primitivna, pa su mnoga vina uništena prije nego što su čak i flaširana.

Štaviše, kaže Stern, grožđe nije uvijek posađeno u pravim regijama ili uzgajano za fino vino. Zatim je krajem 70 -ih Cornelius Ough sa Kalifornijskog univerziteta u Davisu posjetio Golanske visoravni i savjetovao uzgajivače o sadnji. Do 1983. godine zasađeni su Sauvignon Blanc i Cabernet Sauvignon, a marke Yarden, Golan i Galil razvijene su za konkurenciju Carmelu.

U međuvremenu, 1988. godine, rijetki zajednički napor nekoliko proizvođača košer vina pomogao je sponzorirati istraživanje jednog ortodoksnog studenta enologije na UC Davis, Izraelca po imenu Shlomo Rauschberger, koji je nastavio razvijati metode mevushal vina ukusnija nego što su bila, a to je istraživanje postalo naširoko korišteno do berbe 1992. godine.

Danas je vodeći proizvođač košer vina Baron Herzog, s više od 130.000 kutija godišnje-više od polovice se prodaje posebno za Pashu, kaže Stern.

Hagafen, koji se fokusira na visokokvalitetno grožđe u dolini Napa i odležava svoja najbolja vina (Cabernet i Chardonnay) u skupim bačvama od francuskog hrasta, sada prodaje samo 6.500 sanduka vina, od kojih je većina namijenjena vrhunskijoj publici od Herzoga. Gan Eden, sa polovinom Hagafenove proizvodnje, također je vrhunski brand.

1991 Hess Select Cabernet Sauvignon (9,50 USD)- S druge oznake vinarije Hess Collection, vinar Randall Johnson uspio je pomnim miješanjem pridobiti pravi kvalitet od grožđa po niskim cijenama. Ova vrhunska berba ima zemljanu, biljnu aromu/aromu trešnje s primjesama anisa i bora. Odlična vrijednost.


Košer vina za Pashu

Nijedna košer pashalna gozba nije potpuna bez vina: Mi konačno found two gorgeous options from the Napa Valley that are sure to take your Seder up a notch (sorry Mr. Manishevitz).

Jeff Morgan on Covenant Wine

I wish I could tell you that Covenant wine was born from some highly spiritual quest. But it really started with a dare. Back in 2002, my friend and now partner in Covenant wines, Leslie Rudd, told me he didn’t really think we could make a great wine that was kosher. We were both making non-kosher wine in the Napa Valley. But as non-practicing Jews, we didn’t have much faith in those syrupy sweet, weird Concord grape wines we’d grown up drinking at Passover.

Prior to becoming a winemaker, I had been a wine writer, most notably for Wine Spectator. I’d learned over the years that there is no “kosher winemaking” method. In fact, all wine starts off kosher. But to keep it kosher, it can only be handled by Sabbath-observant Jews. Leslie and I found grapes in an old Napa vineyard originally planted in 1889. We were then able to convince one of only three kosher wineries in California to lend us their cellar crew to help with our project. We used the same time-honored winemaking methods that our non-kosher friends and colleagues—many of whom make some of the most famous wines in California and Europe—employ for their own wines. The right grapes paired with the right winemaking techniques yielded some excellent results.

I’ve been generously welcomed into the fold by a Jewish community I would never have known had I not become a kosher winemaker. This powerful bond that I now feel with Jewish history has given me a greater sense of belonging.

As we drink the four cups of wine at Passover this year, I’ll be pouring Covenant. The wine has been a gift to me. And it’s a gift that I am happy to share. And if anyone reading this is planning a trip to the Napa Valley, come visit us for a taste of Covenant too!

Jeff Morgan is the winemaker and co-owner of Covenant wines. He lives with his wife and two daughters in the Napa Valley.


Getting to Know Israel's Wine Country

From cosmopolitan beach towns to ancient archeological and historic sites, from desert landscapes to the lowest point on earth at the Dead Sea, Israel has much to attract travelers. Set among all of this is a rapidly expanding and improving wine industry that combines exciting new boutique estates with producers more than 100 years old, making the country’s wine regions well worth a visit for wine and food lovers.

“Wine is a product of place we are making wine in a place where it has been made for 5,000 years, in an area where wine culture was created,” said Lior Lacser, winemaker at Carmel Winery. “Israel is a great place to make wine.”

Grapegrowing spans much of the country, from the rolling hillsides and mountains in the north to the desert and forest in the south, divided into five official regions: Galilee, Shomron, Samson, Judean Hills and Negev. With its variety of microclimates, soils and temperatures, Israel can grow numerous different grape varieties, including Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, Grenache and Chardonnay.

Today, Israel has more than 200 wineries, more than 10 times the number of table-wine producers just 10 years ago, and the largest 17 are all kosher. But gone are the days when the country produced mainly sweet sacramental wines and inexpensive bottles for local consumption. And the term “kosher wine” is no longer equated with mediocrity, in part thanks to flash pasteurization techniques that allow producers to make mevushal wines without actually tasting as if they've been boiled. “The kosher aspect doesn’t make a difference in the quality,” says Domaine du Castel winemaker Eli Ben Zaken.

Large wineries, such as Carmel and Golan Heights, are producing dry reds and whites that are widely exported, while new boutique wineries (both kosher and non-kosher) have helped push Israel’s wine industry to new heights with their experimentation. More of the country’s wines are earning “very good” ratings, sometimes even “outstanding.”

At the same time, Israelis have been adopting a wine culture. Tel Aviv, Jerusalem and Haifa all feature wine bars and restaurants with serious wine lists stocked with Israeli and international wines. Ben Zaken says, “In the 1980s, we couldn’t even have a [restaurant] wine list of good Israeli wine and, today, you can find really fantastic wine lists of only Israeli wines. Things have changed completely.”

Wine Spectator talked with three winemakers, each located in a different region. From spilled Mouton to kosher quality to farming in California, here is what they had to say about winemaking passion, techniques and culture in Israel.

Lior Lacser, Carmel Winery

The largest wine producer in Israel, Carmel Winery has vineyards all over the country, but the biggest is on the slopes of Mt. Carmel, south of Haifa, at Zichron Ya’acov. Though the historic winery there dates back nearly 120 years, Carmel also features state-of-the-art equipment and tourist attractions such as a restaurant and an education center with a library, film theater and private tasting seminars. From its hand-dug underground cellar to its experimental micro-winery, Carmel’s story represents the timeline of Israeli wine.

Lior Lacser is working with Mediterranean varieties including Carignane, Shiraz and Petite Sirah.

Carmel was founded with the help of Baron Edmond de Rothschild, a member of the famed Rothschild family. After visiting the Shomron area in 1887, Baron Edmond de Rothschild saw winemaking potential. He purchased the property, changing the name from Zamarin to Zichron Ya’acov, which means “in memory of Jacob,” after his father, Baron James Jacob de Rothschild who had acquired Bordeaux’s famous Château Lafite.

Today, Carmel Winery produces 1.25 million cases at four wineries under five collections: Limited Edition, Single Vineyard, Appellation, Private Collection and Selected. Winemaker Lior Lacser, who joined Carmel in 2003 and became head winemaker in 2005, leads a team of eight winemakers at the different locations. A former attorney, he trained as a winemaker in Burgundy, Bordeaux and Australia smiling, he quips, “I threw the law book away, and I studied in Beaune.”

Lacser is working to shift Carmel from mass-market wines toward more high-quality production. Although he has previously made non-kosher wine, at Carmel all the wine is kosher. “I am proud to make the best wine I can, that just happens to also be kosher,” he said. “Israel is the world’s expert on kosher wine, in the same way Champagne makes the best sparkling wine. Nothing wrong in making wine that all Jewish people can drink.”

Lacser is continuously experimenting, especially with the Appellation series, which focuses on single varieties and simple blends, such as Viognier and a Cabernet Sauvignon-Shiraz. “We are currently checking out Grenache and Mourvèdre, which could be ideal for the climate,” Lacser said. “We are on a journey. No one is saying we have arrived, but we are aiming high and having a lot of fun.”

Eli Ben Zaken, Domaine du Castel

Between Jersualem and Tel Aviv lies Israel’s most rapidly growing wine region, the Judean Hills. Cooler than the well-known Golan Heights and Galilee regions in northern Israel and just 25 miles from the Mediterranean Sea, this area had an ancient winemaking history. But in the modern era, Domaine du Castel was among the first small, family-run wineries to establish itself here. (For more wineries, read "Tasting in the Judean Hills".)

Eli Ben Zaken has always worked with his sons, Ariel and Eytan, first with a restaurant and now at the winery.

Founder Eli Ben Zaken owned a popular restaurant in Jerusalem, called Mamma Mia, before purchasing and planting the Castel property in 1988 his sons, Eytan and Ariel, put in the starter vineyard by hand. “Israeli wines were not really great at the time,” Eli explained. “I decided to make some myself. Everyone told me I was crazy, that I should go north. But this is where wine was made during biblical times.”

Completely self-taught as a winemaker, Eli nonetheless found success early on his wines were received well by some international critics and the public from the first vintage, 1992. What began as a 50-case release has evolved into an annual production of more than 8,000 cases, and nearly half of that is exported. Eytan has taken over many of the winemaking responsibilities, while Ariel handles more of the business side.

“It’s an adventure to work with your family,” said Etyan. “When my father started, he was making good wine, but he didn’t know how he was doing it. So we had to look at it more closely. But it’s much more positive working with your father and brother. For us, it’s something we are proud of.”

The family produces three wines, two Bordeaux-style blends, Grand Vin and Petit Castel, and a Chardonnay, “C.” All the grapes are sourced from their 37.5 acres of vineyards or nearby properties under their supervision.

Eli has a soft spot for Bordeaux: He has a collection of 1,000 wines, mostly French. (Among them was a 1982 Château Mouton-Rothschild that slipped from his hands and onto the dusty, concrete floor, shattering on impact. “I got down on the floor and took a sip. It was the most memorable sip of wine I’ve ever had.”) Though he also drinks Burgundy, that won’t influence his plans for Castel. “Pinot Noir would be very difficult to make in Israel. I’m not even thinking about planting it.”

With the 2003 vintage, the Ben Zakens switched to making their wines all kosher. “Kosher is done by religious Jews,” Eli explained. “We had to adapt, like on Saturdays, you can’t work. We can’t get into the winery at all. With the holidays, that’s three days we can’t do anything. So that’s the biggest adaptation. But there’s no difference in quality between kosher and non-kosher wines. It was much easier than I thought.”

Victor Schoenfeld, Golan Heights Winery

Located in the north, Golan Heights Winery is one of the most recognizable names in the Israeli wine industry and one of the powerhouses of the Golan Heights wine region. Begun in 1984, the winery produces wine under three labels, Yarden, Gamla and Golan. One-fifth of its 380,000 cases are exported, to a total of 25 countries, making up almost 38 percent of Israel’s wine exports.

Victor Schoenfeld took a year off during college to manage a vineyard, then changed his major to viticulture when he returned.

The winery is run by Victor Schoenfeld, who studied at the University of California, Davis, and leads a team of three associates all also educated in California. Schoenfeld, a native Californian, spent time in Israel before college and on a later trip in 1986, met winemakers at Golan Heights he saw the region’s potential and decided he wanted to be a part of a developing wine area. “I wanted to combine my affection for Israel with my love of winemaking,” he says. “After close to 20 years, I have never looked back.”

Israel has one of the most southern Mediterranean climates in the northern hemisphere, Schoenfeld explained. “Being further south gives us an advantage of having shorter days during the hottest months and relatively long days as the weather cools, which is very good for high-quality ripening. Our high altitudes cool off our southern latitude. Our clay loam volcanic soils, which we have in the Golan Heights, combine good water holding capacity and good drainage. No other place on the planet has our unique combination of characters.”

But much is still unknown about the best grape varieties and viticultural methods for Israel's distinctive terroir, so Schoenfeld is constantly questioning. “I still feel like the Golan Heights has a huge amount of untapped potential,” he said. “My challenge is to study and understand our conditions so that we can better exploit that potential over time.”

Since 2002, he has worked with American winemaker Zelma Long on a technical project to improve quality in the vineyard and determine which grape varieties are best suited to their sites. Additionally, he uses satellite, ecological and landscape mapping systems to get a better understanding of the terroir, while a network of meteorological stations in the vineyards provides climate data. He even runs his own plant propagation project to study plant physiology, as the local representative of Entav, a technical association for viticultural improvement.

It may sound like a lot of work, but he finds it particularly rewarding, sharing a story from when he was just starting out at Golan Heights. “As a young winemaker, a friend and I went out to dinner at a very nice restaurant,” he said. “It just so happened that all the other tables around us were celebrating something, and coincidentally they were all drinking some wine that I’d made. It was a very special feeling to see something that I made help these people celebrate life. How many people make or do something that brings so much enjoyment to so many people?”


The Definitive Guide To Kosher Wine

There are a number of misperceptions when it comes to kosher wine. Some of these include the belief that all kosher wines are blessed by a rabbi, all are sweet, they appeal only to Jews, and they’re automatically kosher if they come from Israel.

But as it happens, the kosher wine world is ultimately not that different from the regular world of wine.

The modern history of kosher wines in this country really began with the immigration wave from Europe in the latter part of the 1800s, mostly through New York. Vinifera (the genus of noble European varieties) grapes were not available, so instead, concord grapes became the go-to for winemaking. Wines were made to be sweet, which was the custom.

Ovo je posljednji vadičep koji ćete ikada kupiti

If you ask an older Jew about Schapiro’s Wine, which was founded in 1899 on Manhattan’s Lower East Side, they may mention the tagline: “the wine you can almost cut with a knife.” Manischewitz, perhaps more recognizable, opened about fifty years later in Brooklyn, along with the Royal Wine Corporation (aka Kedem), headquartered in Williamsburg.

Schapiro’s has since closed shop, but Manischewitz is strong, and still makes its wine sweet, though it’s no longer family owned. The Herzog family, which owns Royal, has influenced the kosher wine market internationally. Starting with traditional sweet wine made in New York, they slowly but continuously expanded into dry wines. Over the last 20 years in particular, they have produced, sourced and imported an ever-growing selection of classy wines. Their portfolio of kosher wine is the largest in the world, and ranges from virtually every country and type. To accommodate their growth, they moved their headquarters and warehouse to New Jersey. They maintain a winery in upstate New York for their traditional wines and have another modern facility in Oxnard, California, which produces most international varietals from all over California, under several labels that they own.

Other large conventional importer/distributors have recognized the trend, and are now growing their own portfolios of kosher wines (examples are Allied Importers, Monsieur Touton, and Apollo). Yarden, one of Israel’s largest producers of kosher wine, follows the model that Royal started by making, importing and marketing its own production. Carmel Wines, a cooperative that is the largest and oldest kosher certified Israeli producer, started with cuttings supplied by Baron Edmond de Rothschild in 1882. It is currently handled by Royal, though they used to be their own importer. It is not unusual for producers – kosher or not – to switch importers, whether it is for marketing, distribution or other reasons. In addition to these major players, there are also boutique import companies that mostly deal with Israeli wines, such as Happy Hearts Wine, and The River. The cost to maintain certification has to be included in every bottle sold, so the production must be large enough to make it worthwhile. Even if a non-certified wine doesn’t contain anything non kosher, it still wouldn’t be acceptable to the observant, whether it was from Israel or elsewhere.

To be considered kosher, wines and other foods must adhere to interpretations of biblical rules from rabbinic authorities that have come to be accepted over many centuries. Books have been written on the topic, but in the simplest terms, there are allowed (kosher) and disallowed foods (mostly concerning animals), and a prohibition against mixing dairy and meat. There is also a category of food that is neither dairy nor meat, called parve, which can be consumed with no restrictions.

Since wine serves sacramental as well as enjoyment purposes, there are some kashrut (kosher) practices that are very specific to wine. The accepted basics include the following:

  • All rules of kosher observance must be followed, including avoiding contact with non–kosher materials
  • Grapes may be picked by anyone, but once they reach the winery, rabbinic supervision and Sabbath observant workers are required
  • To ensure the wine is parve, dairy or animal based products such as casein or gelatin for fining must be avoided, even if kosher
  • Sealed bottles of wine can be handled by anyone however if an open bottle is handled, poured or even touched by a non-Jew or non-Sabbath observant Jew, the wine is no longer considered kosher for the very observant
  • To allow non-Jews, or even non-observant Jews to handle an open bottle without rendering it non-kosher, the wine may be made “mevushal” by heating it
  • In the old days, such wine was actually cooked before bottling, which is what the term “mevushal” actually means
  • It has been deemed acceptable by modern sources to make a wine mevushal by flash pasteurization, at various temperatures (between 74C and 90C) depending on the authority looking over the directing winemaker’s (who might not be Jewish) shoulder
  • Wines with certification will have the certifying agency listed on the label, as well as if it mevushal

Opinions vary as to whether the modern mevushal process destroys the character of a fine wine. Indeed, most low to moderate priced kosher wines (including the sweet ones) sold in the U.S. market are mevushal, while premium wines, especially those from Israel, are not. So if you have a choice, non-meshuval is the way to go.

Now for the marketplace. We all know the feeling of walking into a wine shop and being hit with a deluge of choices in terms of regions or varietals. Though there may be fewer choices on most stores’ shelves when it comes to kosher wine, it is no less daunting. Add to that the fact that retailers aren’t always as familiar with kosher wines, and the overwhelming feeling gets even worse.

But don’t despair: just like in the non-kosher world, regional and varietal characteristics tend to run true. So everything you already know about California Chardonnay is still valid: new world in style, lots of fruit, perhaps some pineapple and lots of new French and/or American oak. Into White Zin? The kosher versions will be off dry, pink with strawberry notes. That Rioja Crianza will be Tempranillo, at least two years old, with at least 12 months in mostly used oak barrels, just like non kosher versions. Right bank versus left bank Bordeaux will be what you expect, as will New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc compared to one from the Loire.


Across the Table: Kosher wine worth passing around

How did Jeff Morgan morph from a nice Jewish boy from New York into a sax player and bandleader in sequined tuxedo, then into one of the leading wine journalists in the United States, and finally into a kosher wine maker in the Napa Valley? And one who makes not just any kosher wines but a Cabernet Sauvignon that garners big points and can easily hold its own against the big boys’ Napa Valley Cabs?

It’s a long story filled with digressions.

As a young musician, Morgan went to France to study flute, then got a job as sax player and eventually bandleader at the Grand Casinoin Monte Carlo, developing a love of food and wine. That led to his decision to become a winemaker. But nobody in France, it seems, was interested in hiring an American sax player with zero winemaking experience. “So I moved back to the land of opportunity and found a job at a winery on Long Island, basically as a wine slave, doing vineyard and cellar work, learning the ropes and playing gigs at night.”

After several years of this, he thought it might be easier to write about wine than make it, so he started at a local newspaper and eventually worked his way into the New York Times and a job as the West Coast editor of Wine Spectator magazine.

His first assignment in 1992? To write a story on kosher wine for Passover. “My response was, why me?” I didn’t know a thing about kosher wine. I hadn’t even been bar mitzvahed” he recounts. “But I took the job.” In the process, Morgan learned that among the many questionable kosher wines available 21 years ago, there actually were some really good ones.

He wrote that story almost every year for the next seven. “I learned that kosher wine could be made exactly the way non-kosher wine is made. There is no kosher technique. What matters is who touches the wine.” And also that all of the ingredients, including any fining agents, need to be kosher.

Flash forward to 1999, when Leslie Rudd of Rudd Vineyards hired Morgan as wine director at Dean & DeLuca in Napa Valley. The two became friendly. At the same time Morgan started a small (non-kosher) rosé project called SoloRosa. Rudd organized a Jewish winemaker tasting group that invited an Israeli kosher wine maker to present his wine.

“It was a Bordeaux blend — and delicious, so much better than either of us had grown up drinking at Passover,” remembers Morgan. “Those wines were lousy because they were made with the Concord grape.”

The light bulb went on. Morgan told Rudd that if he gave him 10 tons of his best grapes, they could make the greatest kosher wine in 5,000 years. “It was a moment of chutzpah.”

Rudd’s response was, “Are you crazy? What if you screw it up? It will be the worst kosher wine in 5,000 years — and from Rudd Vineyard!” That was that — until Rudd came back with an offer: If Morgan found some other grapes, he’d be his partner.

They decided to call the wine Covenant.

Next step: Morgan had to find Sabbath-observant Jews for his cellar crew. The only ones who knew how to make fine wine were at Herzog Cellars in Southern California, so he persuaded Nathan Herzog to help him out, and in exchange, Herzog could distribute the wines in New York and New Jersey.

For the first harvest in 2003, Morgan brought the grapes down to Herzog in a refrigerated truck. “We used my grapes, my winemaking protocol — and the Herzog cellar crew’s hands,” Morgan says.

The wine got great reviews when it was released in 2005: 93 points from Robert Parker and 92 points from Wine Spectator.

“I did a little celebratory dance. It was nice to know that we made a kosher wine that got serious recognition by the media,” says Morgan, adding that they weren’t the first and only kosher wines ever to get good scores. However, Covenant consistently gets 90-plus scores from the major publications that rate wine.

In 2008, he was able to move the Covenant operation up to Napa, because Jonathan Hadju, one of Herzog’s cellar crew, had moved to the Bay Area. “I asked him to be my associate winemaker. Though I had my bar mitzvah at 54, if Iwant to taste the wine or pull wine out of the barrel, Jonathan has to do that,” says Morgan. “Unfortunately, there’s a lot of cleanup I can still do.”

Covenant wines, which range from $24 to $150 per bottle, are available from its website, https://www.covenantwines.com, or by phone (707) 963-7385. In Los Angeles, Cask Wine Shop at 8616 Pico Blvd. has an excellent selection of kosher wines.

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S. Irene Virbila is a former restaurant critic and wine columnist for the Los Angeles Times. She left in 2015.

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