I’m exhausted! After stopping in at the “Return to Terroir” tasting this afternoon (and quickly tasting about 18 whites & a sparkling wine) I made my way over (conveniently around the corner) to the 2009 Kosher Food & Wine Experience.
This tasting is put together primarily by the large kosher wine importer/distributor; Royal Wine Corp. This year was their 3rd such event and there were over 200 wines from all over the globe in addition to some lovely food catered by Michael Schick caterers.
I will be writing more specifically about the event for a nationally distributed Jewish Weekly paper, but I just want to post quickly and respond to the inquiries I’ve already gotten about the event in very general terms.
Yes, it was once again a “balagan” (hebrew slang roughly translated for our purposes here to jam-packed event).
Utilizing their third different venue in three years, these guys really know how to sell out an event. This venue was the largest and it was still quite crowded. Although I do believe the waits for pours were shorter and the space not as crowded as years past (I was only elbowed about 3 times ).
Of the 200 or so wines being poured at the event, Royal spared no expense and poured some of their best. They unveiled their own new Herzog wine, called generation VIII, made from fruit harvested from the famous To Kalon vineyard. There were top notch Spanish wines, French wines, and of course some terrific Israeli wines as well.
In addition to the wines there were spirits, but sadly I was unable to try any as I really tried to taste (or in many cases re-taste) as many of the wines as possible. Amazingly enough I only made it through 50 wines. I suppose that is what happens when you are interviewing winemakers and really trying to be as analytical as possible about the wines.
As if the food, wine & spirits wasn’t enough, they had speakers and a special guest, Daniel Rogov, the famous Israeli wine critic (and good friend) at the event. I really would have liked to have heard the speakers but was very focused on my wine tasting. I did have a brief chance to chat with “Rogov” who was as sweet as ever. And that was after he spent the evening passing out and signing several hundred copies of his “Rogov’s Guide To Israeli Wines 2009″ book. The book provides a terrific overview of the industry and the specific wineries, and I recommend it to ANYONE (and everyone) with any interest in Israeli wines.
As soon as the paper permits, I will post a link to my more detailed story featuring some of the winemakers and their wines.
If you have any specific questions, as always, feel free to comment, reach out directly, or just yell real loud….
Happy Terroir driven & kosher wine tasting!