Is there any reason behind whether people use a stemmed kiddush cup or not? Does it have to do with minhag? Kabbalah?

I would have thought that some people who have a minhag to put their palm under the cup would used a cup without a stem, but I've seen people do this with a stemmed cup, which seems unsteady.


3 Answers 3


I was told by a prominent North American posek that stemmed cups are an American trend that was all but unheard of in Europe of old, especially considering the preferable orientation of one's palm under the cup for mystical reasons.

  • 2
    Do you have a source for said orientation's mystical reasons?
    – Seth J
    Jan 17, 2012 at 20:47
  • 1
    Aside from a lack of source, Rebbe Nachman of Breslov used a stemmed cup. As a matter of opinion, I find a stemmed cup to be very uncomfortable to hold in any position.
    – user1292
    Mar 12, 2012 at 15:55
  • There is also the “Rizhiner becher”, with leaf-shaped attachments to the stem so it can be held in the kabbalistically-preferred manner; see this picture. Mar 28, 2013 at 3:40
  • @Seth i believe it is a Zohar but I don't know where exactly where he says when you hold it in this way, the fingers are pointing heavenwards as you make the brocha which has some deep kabbalisitic reasoning behind it
    – Dov
    Jun 13, 2020 at 22:18

The Lubavitcher Rebbe's (as well as his father's) cup didn't have a stem.

  • Do you have a source for this? May 16, 2012 at 5:32
  • There are pictures of both. May 16, 2012 at 6:08
  • Could you link or upload photos of the bechers? Feb 26, 2015 at 19:58

I'm pretty sure that it's all about some people who are very stringent to have there hand over the entire bottom of the cup and if you are holding a cup with a stem, the place where your fingers part for the stem of the cup isn't being held. Therefor you would either have to use a cup with out a stem or hold a stemmed cup from the bottom which can be pretty hard.

  • 1
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    – Isaac Moses
    Mar 28, 2013 at 1:58

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