Shavuot, the Festival of Weeks, is the day, according to tradition, when the Jewish People received the Torah. There are many venerable customs associated with this holiday—staying awake until dawn to study Torah, reciting the ancient liturgical poem “Akdamut,” and, of course, serving dairy foods at the holiday meals.
While the braised briskets, pot roasts, and roast turkeys that are such staple during most Jewish holidays cry out for rich red wines, the fish, cream sauces, blintzes, and cheesecakes that are typical Shavuot fare demand good white wines. And nobody makes a better (or more affordable) variety of kosher white wines than the Herzog Wine Cellars.
Joe Hurliman, Herzog’s Head Winemaker, has a special touch with white wines. His whites are all crisp and fruity, with nuanced flavors, and range from light-bodied and bone-dry to full-bodied and super-sweet. No matter what your tastes or menus call for, Herzog Wine Cellars is likely to produce the right whites for you.
If you like your wines dry, start your Shavuot meal with Baron Herzog Sauvignon Blanc. It’s a crisp, dry straw colored wine with fruity flavors and aromas of, pears, lemongrass, Meyer lemons, and a hint of spice. It’s a great accompaniment for salads and lighter fish dishes.
If you’d rather start your meal with something a bit sweeter try Baron Herzog’s Chenin Blanc. This frequent award-winner is semi-dry, and has bright, fruity flavors of orange, pineapple, kiwi, and passion fruit, with a lovely touch of honey on the finish. This wine would be perfect to serve with a cold fruit soup.
Try one of Herzog Wine Cellar’s excellent Chardonnay’s to accompany rich main courses, such as poached salmon in cream sauce. Weinstock’s Cellar Select, Chardonnay is a straw colored, medium-to-full-bodied wine, which has flavors and aromas of apples, pears, quince, and toasty oak, with notes of vanilla and cream. Or step it up to Herzog’s Special Reserve Russian River Chardonnay, perhaps the best kosher Chardonnay on the market—aged for fifteen months in a mixture of American and French oak, this medium-to-full-bodied, bright straw colored wine has flavors and aromas of apples, lemons, freshly mowed grass, cream, and toasty oak, with a delightful whiff of wild flowers.
Pair your cheese blintzes or cheesecake with Herzog’s Late Harvest Orange Muscat. It’s a sweet, light-orange-blush colored wine, with a medium body and a grapy flavor with elements of citrus, lichee and apricots.
And after the table is clear, enjoy a glass of Herzog’s Late Harvest White Riesling, a digestif, the perfect finish to a rich dairy meal. This super rich, sweet, full bodied white has a nose of lavender, lime, and kumquat, and a nutty, toffee flavor, with elements of pineapple and orange. This is a wine to sip and savor.
As you put together your Shavout shopping list, don’t forget to include some of Joe Hurlimans whites from Herzog wine cellars.