Founded by the late Daniel Rogov, focusing primarily on wines that are either kosher or Israeli.
User avatar
User

Menachem S

Rank

Wine guru

Posts

657

Joined

Wed Jul 16, 2008 7:46 am

Kosher versions of world class wines

by Menachem S » Thu Oct 23, 2008 2:00 pm

There have been many variations of kosher versions of Bordeaux wines, and of course we know about the two capcanes offerings.

Does anyone know of any other world class wines that are available in kosher versions?

I would think one would go crazy for a penfolds, or silver oak, or some other napa label giving us a kosher version of a world class wine.

Any ideas, thoughts, ones I'm missing?

Thanks
no avatar
User

Matt Walter

Rank

Ultra geek

Posts

110

Joined

Fri Jul 18, 2008 9:18 am

Re: Kosher versions of world class wines

by Matt Walter » Thu Oct 23, 2008 5:29 pm

I, for one, would welcome and most likely purchase just about any well-respected red that would be made kosher. It always bothers me that more of the fine Israeli wines (Margalit, Flaum, etc.) are not kosher. It would be great if those, and some nice Napa reds could be available in kosher versions.

I don't know how large the kosher market is, but I would certainly do my part to help support it, and I'm sure many of our forum members would do likewise. As more and more kosher wine consumers discover fine wine, perhaps we will see a few more vineyards put out some kosher editions.

Matt
no avatar
User

Mike BG

Rank

Ultra geek

Posts

280

Joined

Wed Jul 09, 2008 4:25 pm

Location

Maale Adumim, Israel

Re: Kosher versions of world class wines

by Mike BG » Thu Oct 23, 2008 5:45 pm

I am waiting for a kosher Chateau d'Yquem ...
no avatar
User

Gamliel K

Rank

Ultra geek

Posts

140

Joined

Wed Jul 09, 2008 4:40 pm

Location

Silver Spring, MD

Re: Kosher versions of world class wines

by Gamliel K » Fri Oct 24, 2008 12:39 pm

Mike BG wrote:I am waiting for a kosher Chateau d'Yquem ...


Amen to that brother!
User avatar
User

Daniel Rogov

Rank

Resident Curmudgeon

Posts

12964

Joined

Fri Jul 04, 2008 4:10 am

Location

Tel Aviv, Israel

Re: Kosher versions of world class wines

by Daniel Rogov » Sat Oct 25, 2008 8:08 am

First of all, as some American comedian once put it so nicely: "What you see is what you get". In other words, don't look too far because you're not going to find much.

The list of Bordeaux Chateaux producing kosher editions on a regular or periodic basis is indeed a long and quite respectable one and includes among others the wines of Barons Edmond and Benjamin de Rothschild, Chateau Malmaison, Chateau Cheval Brun, Chateau Frombague, Chageau de Gairoird, Chateau Giscours, Chateau Haut Philippon, Chateau Labegorce, Chateau Labegorce Zede, Chateau La Clare, Chateau Lafon-Rochet, Chateau La France, Chateau Le Crock, Chateau Leoville Poyferre, Chateau Montviel, Chateau Patris, Chateau Peyrat-Forthon, Chateau Pontet Canet, Chateau Roc de Boissac, Chateau Rollan de By, Chateau Royaumont, Chateau Smith Haute-Lafitte, and Chateau Valandraud.

Among the historical reasons for the "kosher connection" with Bordeaux were the demand by Jews in the UK and later in the USA for quality kosher wines and because of what might be thought of as a fairly heavy investment by Jewish families within Bordeaux who were open to the suggestion. Not one of the best chateaux would dream of "going kosher" but many will consider doing special kosher bottlings on the demand of primarily American and some English importers who have developed a market for such wines.

Going beyond Bordeaux in France, most of the kosher wines are done on a fairly "catch as catch-can" basis, that on special order by negotiants located both within France and the USA. That is to say, the negotiant will find a willing winery, a wine that they consider acceptable and then go for a kosher edition. In most cases those do not come as editions from a given producer but as private labels. There are some exceptions in France to this – e.g. Chateau Ministre in the Coteaux du Languedoc and Domaine St.-Benoit in Chateauneuf-du-Pape. In Burgundy many wineries produce relatively small quantities of wines and it is simply not worth their effort to produce a kosher edition. The exception in Burgundy are again negotiants who will order private label kosher wines.

When it comes to Italy, Spain, Portugal, Germany, Chile, Argentina, Australia, and New Zealand, several wineries do release kosher editions but with a few notable exceptions, those are usually negotiant or private label wines and although some of those can be quite good, they do not include any of the truly great wine producers of those countries. There are also several wineries in each of these countries that produce only kosher wines, those varying in quality from the poor to the excellent.

As to the hope that some of the best wineries in these countries will begin producing kosher editions, let me only suggest that you do not "hold your breath" in anticipation. You'll have a long and difficult time without oxygen making its way to the brain. With full respect to those who keep kashrut, this is simply not an audience large enough to make such additional effort or expense worthwhile. Being quite realistic, there is going to be just so much space on shelves and so much money to be devoted to advertising and promotion. The kosher-observant crowd is simply not voluminous enough to make such changes. As such people have adjusted to limitations on where and what they can eat, so they must make the adjustment to where and what they can drink.

All of which is not so bad as the quality and availablity of kosher wines, not only from Israel but especially from Napa, from South America, from Spain and France continues to rise. Some say that at least several Jews (e.g. Einstein, Karl Marx, and Sigmund Freud among others) have changed the way we perceive our world. I tend to agree with that but I will promise that we Jews will not have a major impact on those of the great wineries of the world when it comes to producing kosher wines.

With specific regard to Chateau d'Yquem, I suspect that the only time we will see a kosher wine from there is if the Messiah chooses to appear and, after settling the affairs of our little planet, decides to do a stage at that noble establishment.

Best
Rogov
User avatar
User

Daniel Rogov

Rank

Resident Curmudgeon

Posts

12964

Joined

Fri Jul 04, 2008 4:10 am

Location

Tel Aviv, Israel

Re: Kosher versions of world class wines

by Daniel Rogov » Sat Oct 25, 2008 8:17 am

Matt Walter wrote:I, for one, would welcome and most likely purchase just about any well-respected red that would be made kosher. It always bothers me that more of the fine Israeli wines (Margalit, Flam, etc.) are not kosher. It would be great if those, and some nice Napa reds could be available in kosher versions.

I don't know how large the kosher market is, but I would certainly do my part to help support it, and I'm sure many of our forum members would do likewise. As more and more kosher wine consumers discover fine wine, perhaps we will see a few more vineyards put out some kosher editions.



Matt, Hi.....

It may bother you as a consumer of kosher-only wines that some of these wines are not kosher, but there are several good reasons why those wines are and will in most likelihood remain non-kosher. Among the major reasons is that the winemakers of these wines want the kind of hands-on involvement in their wines that they lose once they turn to kashrut. Some of these wineries, mostly boutique to small/medium in size, were started by people with a specific love of winemaking and they are not willing to give up that intimacy with their wines that would be required by the presence of a mashgiach (kashrut supervisor).

It is obvious why large wineries in Israel must be kosher (no kashrut certificate means no admission to supermarkets and other outlets) but many of the best small to medium-sized wineries manage comfortably to sell all of their wines even though they are not kosher. On the other hand, many that have gone to kashrut have done so precisely because they had over-expanded and could not otherwise sell their wines.

I know of no winemaker in any fine winery (large, medium, small) who does not feel a major modicum of frustration because they are not allowed to "touch" their own wines. True, several of the wineries have senior winemakers who are observant but the majority do not.

Personally, I cannot help but feel that it is precisely that personal touch that makes some of the non-kosher wineries so outstanding. In my own case, I am always saddened when a small winery switches over to kashrut entirely for ecoomic purposes.

Best
Rogov
no avatar
User

Matt Walter

Rank

Ultra geek

Posts

110

Joined

Fri Jul 18, 2008 9:18 am

Re: Kosher versions of world class wines

by Matt Walter » Sat Oct 25, 2008 9:35 pm

Hi Daniel!

I do not fault the Israeli winemaker for not wanting to give up the ability to be intimately involved with the making of their wines. It is indeed a shame if that is what is necessary in order to be kosher. Still, some "boutique" wines (such as Bustan or Covenant in the US) have managed to be kosher without, presumably, sacrificing the winemaker's level of involvement.

I probably should have used a phrase other than "bothers me" to describe my feelings about the fine Israeli wines that are not kosher certified. I feel disappointed that I am missing out on being able to enjoy the fruits of these fine winemaker's efforts. In a sense, given my religious and nationalistic convictions, I also feel it is a shame that all Jews do not produce a product that all other Jews can partake. And, I do believe that there are instances where the Kashrut organizations could work harder to make it more attractive and feasible for food/wine producers to enjoy kashrut certification of their products.

As you alluded in your earlier post, the issues that keep all Israeli winemakers from getting kashrut certifications will not disappear until Moshiach (the Messiah) comes.

Still, there is much reason for optimism. Bit by bit, more and more fine wines (or so it seems to me) are becoming kosher or producing kosher editions. More and more kosher consumers are in the marketplace, and their numbers are growing steadily. I see increased respect and tolerance between observant and non-observant Jews in the US, Israel, and worldwide and pray that it continues to trend that way. Sure, there is still much to be improved, but the trend is a good one.

Kol Tuv,
Matt

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Majestic-12 [Bot] and 2 guests

Powered by phpBB ® | phpBB3 Style by KomiDesign