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April 12, 2011 11:22 am

Holiday Shopping (Kosher Wine Buying Guide – Part II)

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avatar by Yossie Horwitz

California wine grapes. Photo: Thomas Oldcastle

For this week’s post, I have included Part II of my favorite wines from my annual Pesach Kosher Wine Buying Guide (Part I of my favorites can be found here) with my favorite wines out of in the $30-50 range and Moshiach wines (which are wines I would be honored to serve the Moshiach were he to grace my Yom Tov table).


(1) B.R. Cohn, Trestle Glen Vineyard, Cabernet Sauvignon, 2008. The first kosher wine from the legendary Bruce Cohn and a resounding success. Available directly from the winery. An elegant wine that goes well with food, it will easily age gracefully for at least another 4-5.

(2) Capcanes, Peraj Ha’abib Flor de Primavera, 2008. One of my all time favorite wines.

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(3) Castel, Petit Castel, 2007. A “second” wine to the Grand Vin in price and name only, not quality.

(4) Covenant, Lavan (Chardonnay), 2009. Just as successful as their 2008 wine. Almost a cross between a California Chardonnay and French Chablis.

(5) Ella Valley Vineyards, Vineyard’s Choice, Merlot, 2005. Merlot is Ella Valley’s specialty & it shows. The Cabernet Sauvignon is also really great but beware of older vintages that are past their prime.

(6) Four Gates, Cabernet Franc, 2006. One of my favorite Cabernet Franc wines and truly a tremendous winery. The wines are only available directly from the winery, but are well worth the effort.

(7) Golan Heights Winery, Yarden, Single Vineyard-Ortal, Syrah, 2004. I drink tons of Syrah these days and this is an easy favorite.

(8) Hagafen, Prix, Zinfandel – Moskowite Ranch/Block 61, 2006. A big and powerful Zinfandel with plenty of fruit, spice and chocolate coming together magnificently.

(9) Recanati, Special Reserve, 2006. One of my all-time favorites and a severely under appreciated wine.

(10) Yatir, Cabernet Sauvignon, 2006. As with every wine made by Yatir, this is an amazing Cabernet Sauvignon and well worth splurging on.

Moshiach Wines
Please note that some of the Moshiach wines are older vintages that I have in my cellar or were acquired directly from Israel, and therefore may not be readily available at your local retailer. While they may be a tad difficult to lay your hands on, I promise you these are all worth the extra mile of effort or additional shekels! For additional Moshiach Wines, see the Best Wines of 2010.

(1) Carmel, Limited Edition, 2005. Another example of Carmel’s move from power to elegance. An amazing wine that will age gracefully and provide years of enjoyment but is also ready to enjoy right now.

(2) Castel, Grand Vin, 2004. 2007 is the current vintage in the US and is delicious. Get your hands on any Castel wine from the 2008 vintage. They are all magnifique!

(3) Château Guiraud, Sauternes 1er Cru, 2001. The best kosher dessert wine. Period.

(4) Covenant, Solomon, Cabernet Sauvignon, 2008. After many years, Leslie Rudd finally gave Jeff his wish and allowed a Covenant wine to be made from his acclaimed grapes. All I can say is – Wow.

(5) Golan Heights Winery, Katzrin Red, 2003. After all these years the Katzrin is still the Israeli Rock Star of wine and the one with the longest aging ability. The 2007 was just released but isn’t ready to drink yet.

(6) Golan Heights Winery, Yarden, Rom, 2006. An incredible new addition to the Yarden label. While surprisingly ready to drink right now, this wine will age for at least another decade.

(7) Hagafen, Prix, Mélange, 2004. Hagafen’s flagship wine and well deserving of the title. The 2004 vintage remains one of the best kosher wines I have ever tasted and the 2006 is the current release.

(8) Herzog, Generation VIII, Cabernet Sauvignon, To Kalon, 2006. A wine worthy of the famed To-Kalon vineyard. Tons of fruit, terroir and elegance all rolled into an awesome (&very expensive package).

(9) Psagot, Single Vineyard, Cabernet Sauvignon, 2007. Easily Psagot’s best wine ever and worth buying as much of it as you can.

(10) Yatir, Forest, 2003. Perfection in a bottle. Every vintage of this wine is amazing and the 2004 and 2005 vintages are both highly recommended as well. 2007 is the current release but needs some time.

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