Wine for Passover, Elegant Enough For All Year

Fill the Four Cups With Any Of These Crisp Whites and Rich Reds, All Under $30. Image: Thinkstock

I have a soft spot in my heart for Manischewitz, the Kosher wine served at so many Sabbath dinners and Seders, because it was the first wine I ever tasted. Being allowed this wine at Passover when I was a little girl made me feel very grownup, sweet as it was (and probably diluted).

So it is with love that I say that kosher-for-Passover wine doesn’t have to be Manischewitz.

There are so many great kosher wines these days — below are a few of my favorites. I had a chance to taste a bunch of them at the Kosher Food & Wine Experience back in February, and others were recommended by kosher-wine afficianado Sadie Flateman of 67 Wines in Manhattan.

Tabor Winery Adama Sauvignon Blanc 2013 $20

A lean, classic style of sauvignon blanc, the flavor of this dry white wine is somewhat grassy, with a flinty mineral quality that comes from the chalk soil the grapes are grown in. There’s passionfruit and citrus on the palate. A good match for light fish dishes.

Tabor Winery Mt. Tabor Chardonnay 2012 $15

Made in the Lower Galilee on vineyards first planted in 1901 by the Rothschild’s, this crisp unoaked chardonnay has lovely acidity that offsets its light fruit notes. A versatile white wine that would be lovely with roasted chicken.

Photograph by Martyna Starosta

Flam Classico 2012 $30

An elegant, balanced blend of cabernet sauvignon, merlot, cabernet franc and petit verdot with just a touch of syrah, this soft, dry, fruity red with a bit of spice is made in the Judean Hills.

Photograph by Martyna Starosta

Livny Winery Reed Pipe Judean Hills 2012 $22

This red wine has good acidity, and is starting to show some character. It’s 90 percent cabernet sauvignon and 20 percent pinot noir, a rare combo. “Those grapes are usually not put together,” says Sadie Flateman of 67 Wines. “But it worked. It’s a happy little wine.”

Photograph by Martyna Starosta

Ramot Naftaly Special Edition Shiraz 2012 $27

From a boutique winery in the Upper Galilee, this red is full-bodied, dark and chewy, with a touch of cabernet sauvignon and mouvedre. “I think it’s what a lot of people are looking for: easygoing fruit, but still with nice spice and backbone and structure,” Flateman said. Great with brisket.

Liza Schoenfein is food editor of the Forward. Contact her at and follow her on Twitter @LifeDeathDinner. Her personal blog is Life, Death & Dinner.

Wine for Passover, Elegant Enough For All Year

Your Comments

The Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. All readers can browse the comments, and all Forward subscribers can add to the conversation. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Forward requires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not and will be deleted. Egregious commenters or repeat offenders will be banned from commenting. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and the Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.

Recommend this article

Wine for Passover, Elegant Enough For All Year

Thank you!

This article has been sent!