Four wines for your four cups at the Passover Seder
For this year’s Passover edition, I am choosing wines that will excite your palate, keep you from dozing off during the Seder and partially make up for the smaller attendance around the table this year.
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1. 2018 Flam Classico: This Bordeaux blend is confusing on the palate. That is why I suggest drinking it for your first cup, as I find the story of the Four Sons challenging and, sometimes, confusing. The dominant grape in this wine is a rich Judean Hills cabernet, which spreads the taste of blackberry jam everywhere in your mouth. The petit verdot and syrah are slight reminders of the bitterness that will be discussed throughout the Seder; in this case, though, it is a bitterness you will want to keep drinking. Enjoy this wine with the potatoes and salt water.
2. 2016 Herzog Napa Valley Reserve Cabernet: I recommend this bottle for the second cup, the part of the Seder where we tell the story of leaving Egypt. This wine, too, has a story to tell. The Herzog family, the greatest kosher wine family of our generation, left Czechoslovakia and settled in America, where they built a great kosher wine dynasty. The Napa Valley cabernet is a wine filled with the characteristics of the Herzog family. It is full-bodied and elegant. The cabernet grapes were aged for 18 months in small French oak barrels, giving it a creamy vanilla mid-palate both in taste and in feel. Drink this wine with a matzah sandwich of bitter herbs and charoset.
3. 2015 Leoville Poyferre: As you wind down the meal and need an elegant, sophisticated wine to help you prepare for the Hallel portion of the Seder, drink a wine that is as close as you can get to (or rivals) godliness. The Leoville is a pristine blend of cabernet and merlot with a smidgen of cabernet franc and petit verdot to round out the symphony of berry and cedar flavors. This wine will take your spirit higher than it has ever gone.
4. 2016 Matar CB: Round out the Seder with this amazing wine. It is best enjoyed with singing. What better than cabernet and shiraz blended in French oak for 30 months to bring you to song? The wine has strong overtones of plum in the mid-palate and is filled with aromas and flavors of strong Italian coffee. Enjoy this wine with any leftovers from the Seder table.