People go in search for the best a.k.a. oldest wine for Shabbat but is there any halachic basis for it? Other than Oneg Shabbat?

In other words, is there any halachic source for using wine that is older than 40 days for Shabbat kiddush?

(I specified 40 days because that's what brought in the Mishna Berura (Siman 272, Seif Katan 5) in the name of the Pri Megadim. That's the opinion of the Kaf Hachaim too.)

Note: The question is not to be confused with old wine for Pesach where there is a mitzvah to go after best wine as brought explicitly in the Shulchan Aruch.

  • It means "it spent a minimum of 40 days fermenting." Grape juice does not.
    – Shalom
    Commented May 28 at 21:00
  • I didnt say grape juice Commented May 28 at 21:05
  • @edward B people go in search for the best a.k.a. oldest wine for shabbat but is there any halachic basis for it? Else then oneg shabbat? Commented May 28 at 21:06
  • 3
    Could you please edit to clarify what role the MB is playing in your question? Without looking it up, it sounds like it's an answer to "is there a source?".
    – Isaac Moses
    Commented May 28 at 21:35
  • Where does shulchan aruch mention that about pesach
    – Double AA
    Commented May 28 at 21:44

2 Answers 2


The Peninei Halacha says (Shabbat 6:3 https://ph.yhb.org.il/en/01-06-03/ )

“The Sages instituted the recitation of kiddush over wine because it is the most dignified beverage, as it provides both nourishment and good cheer.”

The association of wine with kiddush (and other mitzvot) is based on sources including Tehillim 104:5 (Wine gladdens the heart of man, making the face brighter than oil, and bread fills man’s heart) and Judges 9:13 (wine gladdens G-d and man). See also Pesachim 109a (And now that the Temple is not standing there is no rejoicing (שִׂמְחָה) except through wine(citing Tehillim 104:15)) and also Berachot 35b (wine satisfies and also gladdens).

The Mishnah Berura (272:5) states (ה) יין מגתו - ומ"מ מצוה מן המובחר ביין ישן והיינו כשכבר עבר עליו מ' יום:

The best way to fulfil the mitzvah of kiddush is to use old wine – wine that is at least 40 days old.

The Peninei Halacha states (also in Shabbat 6:3)

“Ideally, in order to glorify the mitzva, kiddush should be made over a fine wine, one the person making kiddush really enjoys.”

So using wine that you most enjoy (and which is more than 40 days old) for kiddush is a question of hiddur mitzvah - beautifying, enhancing or glorifying the mitzvah of kiddush.

  • Did you see him bringing an earlier source? And secondly if its for the fact that he enjoys, I already mentioned Oneg Shabbat Commented May 29 at 2:35

It is a hiddur mitzva to use יין ישן - "old wine" for kiddush, as you quoted from the Mishnah Berura. The Alter Rebbe Shulchan Aruch explains that old wine is superior in quality.

[Achronim apply this ruling in two other areas:

  1. The Aliya Raba 175:4 writes that one says the brocho of Hatov Vehamtiv on 'old wine' after 'new wine' because presumbly it is higher quality.

[ד] אחד חדש וכו'. כתב נחלת צבי היינו כששותה תחילה חדש ואחר כך ישן אבל כששותה תחילה ישן ואחר כך חדש אין מברך הטוב והמטיב אלא אם ידוע לו שהוא טוב כמו הישן לפי שמסתמא יין חדש אינו טוב כמו הישן, עד כאן, וכתב התשב"ץ סימן רצ"ו דכל שלושים יום של תסיסתו קרוי חדש, וכן כתב הכלבו:

  1. Shechiyanu on the second night of Rosh Hashana

The Magen Avrohom 600:1 writes:

אם יש לו תירוש חדש יקדש על היין ישן וכשיגיע לשהחיינו יטול התירוש בידו (ד"מ מנהגים) ואף על גב דמקדשין על תירוש כמ"ש סי' ער"ב ס"ב מ"מ ישן מצוה מן המובחר ועסי' רכ"ה ס"ה ומט"מ כ' שא"צ ליקח בידו אלא יתן עיניו בו:]

The Hidur does not seem to be related to the oldest wine available, but rather to 'old wine,' which in this context means wine that has fully undergone fermentation. According to Pri Megadim, this process takes 40 days, whereas Kalbo, as quoted in Aliya Rabah, states it takes 30 days.

  • Thats what I found too, every place it says old wine refers to 40 days. Not more. See the kaf hachaim too. Commented May 30 at 2:21

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