View Full Version : Kosher?

10-19-2003, 13:41
Is Bourbon Kosher?...I know a little bit about what that means but is any bourbon Kosher?...

I remember looking at a little bitty salt packet...on it there was a little K in a circle...I asked what that meant...I was told it was Kosher...I don't think that I have seen the Kosher symbol on any bourbon products...

http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif Bettye Jo http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/grin.gif

10-19-2003, 14:20
Bettye Jo:

I believe there is only one bourbon that is certified Kosher--Old Williamsburg, but I believe all bourbons are considered fit for Kosher consumption.

There is more information on Kosher whiskey at this page on the Celtic Malts website Kosher whiskey (http://www.celticmalts.com/journal-a14.htm).

10-19-2003, 14:23
Check queenannewine.com/kosherbourbon

Booker's True Barrel Boubon

- Nancy

10-19-2003, 17:58
I should know this better than I do, being a member of the "tribe", but I have been told bourbon and all straight whiskey meet the criteria for kosher preparation. The difficulty arises, apparently, with certain single malts and any other whisky which may contain sherry or other wine, so malts aged or finished in sherry casks can sometimes raise an issue with those who follow strictly the rules in this regard. Apparently, again, there is a percentage of wine in whisky that is considered not significant, so that would meet the rules. I once had a discussion about this with a religious co-religionist on the eve of Friday shabbat (Sabbath) at the fine liquor section of a Quebec liquor board outlet on Ste. Catherine Street in Montreal. He was very knowledgeable about malts, and not just in regard to the kosher-related rules. He also liked bourbon, citing I recall the Birthday Bourbon of Forester as the best he had tasted. I don't think he could challenge me on the effects of patent distillation on congeneric content; on the other hand, he told me, "don't bother with any Ardbeg after 1975, they are good but the distillery had abandoned using malt from its own maltings by then". Whether he was right or wrong about Ardbeg, I learned something that day, amongst other things, not to have preconceptions. http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/smile.gif


10-19-2003, 18:29
I found an interesting article that discusses alcoholic beverages and the Kosher rules:


10-22-2003, 12:26
Don't mean to belabor the issue,
but a friend from Queens,
who was born and raised Jewish,
assured us that
"ALL WHISKEY IS KOSHER." http://www.straightbourbon.com/forums/images/graemlins/bowdown.gif
And he drinks it too.
- Nancy

10-23-2003, 16:12
Max Shapira once explained to me the issues and problems with making bourbon kosher. I don't remember the explanation but I'm sure he does. Being Jewish, he looked into it but decided it was more trouble than it was worth.

10-23-2003, 16:27
But I wonder what those problems (?) are. The article posted by Onecubeonly seems categoric that most domestic whiskey meets the (Halachic) criteria. Of course, no sherry or other wine would enter into Heaven Hill's straight whiskey..


10-23-2003, 16:36
Is there a distinction between everyday kosher and kosher for passover? I think that may have been the issue. I seem to recall, although I may have this wrong, that the Shapira family had to transfer ownership to a non-Jew for some period of time and for bourbon, this was made impractical by the aging cycle, but I may have this completely wrong.

The last time this subject came up, a couple of years ago, I joked that it probably had to do with how they killed the yeast. Some lurker, apparently not understanding the joke, was offended and wrote an angry note to Butler. Naturally, I can't resist repeating the offense.

10-23-2003, 16:56
Oh yeah, that was a classic Chuck. That person was just a tad on the delusional side.

Just for old time's sake, here they are:

Chuck's offending post (http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/showthreaded.php?Cat=&Board=General&Number=4573&Fo rum=All_Forums&Words=kosher%20yeast&Match=And&Sear chpage=0&Limit=25&Old=allposts&Main=4572&Search=tr ue#Post4573)

The response (http://www.straightbourbon.com/ubbthreads/showthreaded.php?Cat=&Board=off&Number=4576&Forum= All_Forums&Words=jewish&Match=Entire%20Phrase&Sear chpage=0&Limit=25&Old=allposts&Main=4576&Search=tr ue#Post4576)

10-23-2003, 16:57
Well, yes, Kosher for Passover is different than Kosher for regular purposes. Kosher for Passover means no bread (only the flatbread (non-raised) of the Middle East, "matzoh" to Jews). So yeast, as you mentioned, may be the issue with that level of compliance. Because of course yeast causes bread to rise, which would not therefore be flat. But apart from use for Passover (the Jewish Spring festival related to Easter) there is no difficulty with drinking whisky, and indeed, for most Jewish people who imbibe, no difficulty drinking it at any time. The other day I was told by a friend also raised in Montreal that he recalled Saturday morning services were preceded, for a group of his grandfather's friends, by taking a shot or two of whisky - this was before morning services, not at the the Kiddush (ritual meal) that ends those services at around noon (where a shot certainly is traditional). I myself recall in Montreal at such Kiddushes (1950's-1960's) that the whisky taken was one of the Canadian rye blends: Crown Royal, Seagram VO, Wiser's or similar. Scotch too, but nothing very fancy: usually Black & White or St-Leger (a Quebec favourite possibly due to its (accidental) French name). Anyway, my knowledge in this precinct is, unfortunately, minimal and I welcome other opinions.


10-23-2003, 17:16
There is (sadly) enough genuine prejudice, nay hatred in the world today (as recent events have testified on the world stage) that jokes made lightly and in good faith should not attract anyone's umbrage. I cannot see what is objectionable in what Chuck said. I know Chuck, to boot, and believe he would never mean harm to any ethnic group, he is not like that.

If anyone did express views I felt were objectionable, though, I would not hesitate to express my opinion (and I trust others would express theirs regardless of creed, because these issues don't concern just the people affected, they concern all of us - that's the whole point, in fact).

Glad to see, Jim, you are sensitive to these issues, as you are on other matters potentially affecting board civility; it is appreciated by us all.


10-24-2003, 18:22
Although the guy didn't sign his name to his complaint, he did sign himself "offended by Cowdery."

Not, I'm afraid, a very exclusive club.

10-24-2003, 18:58
I wouldn't join any club that would have someone like me as a member. - Groucho