37 votes
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Why does my bottle of Kosher grape juice say that it's 'for sacramental purposes only'?

The reason is to exempt it from Value Added Tax. See the regulation at this www.gov.uk site. The important bit says: 4.7 Food and drink for religious and sacramental use The existence of ...
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13 votes
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Why do we recite 'Borei Pri Ha'etz ' on grapes?

In regards to your "first" question, the reason that we do not say hagafen before they are processed should really be asked the other way around, which is why do we make hagafen after it is processed, ...
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12 votes
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Did Bartenura really mention this minhag?

עוד מנהג ליהודים מארץ ישמעאל בערב שבת הולכים כלם לבית המרחץ ובשובם מביאות נשותיהם לפניהם יין ומרבים בשתיה ואחר מביאות התבשיל שהכינו לסעודת הערב אוכלים מבעוד יום עד שתחשך ואחר באים כולם לבית ...
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11 votes
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Why is alcohol not prohibited?

Rabbenu Avraham ben HaRambam writes: If God would forbid everyone to drink wine and alcohol as he forbade non-kosher animals and fowl, not all would be able to comply...such a prohibition would ...
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10 votes
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How could the brothers drink with Yosef?

Imrei Baruch says the following answers to your question. A: Chizkuni - The brothers drank since at that moment there was no Gezaira (decree) yet for Stam Yainom (non-Jewish wine). B: Medrosh ...
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9 votes

Making Kiddush with Grape Juice or White Wine

Red is described as preferable, though white is always acceptable if necessary. (Or perhaps even if it's a type of wine you strongly prefer.) During times of the blood libels, white wine was actually ...
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8 votes
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Under-Aged Drinking for the 4 Cups on Pesach

I will offer a partial answer to the question. Many states have exceptions to the underage drinking law that for religious purposes it is allowed. Many states also have an exception when on private, ...
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  • 411
8 votes
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Kashering and tevilas of corkscrews

The Kof-K list of tevila instructions says that, according to the OU, Star-K and CRC, a corkscrew does not require tevilah because it does not touch the food. The Star-K confirms. And so does R Forst ...
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  • 43.7k
8 votes

For how long must a vessel be left open for it to be considered "Megulah"?

See e.g. Maimonides Hilkhoth Rotzeach U'Shemirath Hanefesh 11:8 כל המשקין האסורין משום גילוי שנתגלו בין ביום בין בלילה אסורין ואפילו היה בצדן אדם ישן אין אימת ישן על הזוחלין. וכמה ישהו ויאסרו כדי ...
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  • 17.2k
7 votes
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May Jews sell wine to Christians for them to use in their religious ceremonies?

This one's fairly clear-cut. The Talmud says it's prohibited to sell frankincense in small, retail amounts to pagans that they will use in their pagan worship. However you can sell it in bulk as ...
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7 votes
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Wine made/handled by Bnei Noach

This is debated by the Gemara (Avodah Zarah 64b). The Rambam rules that it is forbidden to drink the wine of a ger toshav, but it is permitted to derive benefit from it. This is the ruling of the ...
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7 votes
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Three faceted blessing after public kiddush on Friday night

Shulchan Aruch Orach Chayyim 269 rules that if one recites kiddush in a synagogue without a meal following it (where such is the custom) the adult making kiddush should not drink the wine but instead ...
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6 votes
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Being intoxicated a Sin?

Rambam Hilchos De'os 5:3 וכל המשתכר, הרי זה חוטא ומגונה ומפסיד חכמתו; ואם משתכר בפני עמי הארץ, הרי זה חילל את השם. Anyone who gets drunk, he is a sinner and is disgusting and loses his wisdom. And ...
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6 votes

How could the brothers drink with Yosef?

Update: The answer below deals with yayin nesech and does not speak about "Stam Yanom" because it did not apply at thet time. Note that it says in 43:32 it says וַיָּשִׂימוּ לוֹ לְבַדּוֹ ...
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6 votes

Why were Nazarites forbidden to touch anything made of grapes, but we make a brocha over wine on Sabbath?

The relationships between Nezirut and wine are broadly treated in Gemara and Rishonim. We will start with Samson, Samuel and touching problem of wine in sacrifices, and later wine of Kiddush and ...
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6 votes

Bircas Hamazon exempts al hagefen

It's Shulchan Arukh OC 272:10 ברכת יין של קידוש פוטרת יין שבתוך הסעודה ואינו טעון ברכה לאחריו דברכת המזון פוטרתו בין שהוא על הכוס בין שאינו על הכוס.‏ The blessing on wine for Kiddush exempts ...
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6 votes

Blessing over a wine-water mix

It appears that you need 1/6 (17%) of wine or grape juice to still be able to say hagefen. The issue is that wine nowadays is already diluted. The proper way therefore appears to be to first say the ...
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6 votes

Diagram showing the place where the wine offerings of the whole year collected and its relationship to the altar in the Temple

Yes if you look at the Perush Chai here it has a clear diagram: In addition, the Machon Hamikdash website features a write up on both the שיתין and the לול with artistic renderings which might ...
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  • 20.5k
5 votes

Is there "stam yeinam" with wine from a monotheistic gentile? (eg Muslim)

There were two reasons to prohibit -- the possibility of the wine being used for pagan practices, and to avoid intermarriage. The former would prohibit you from selling the wine too, the latter would ...
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5 votes
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Bracha on nonkosher wine?

Well if you are dying of thirst and the only liquid available is not kosher, I guess you could drink it. But otherwise -- there are other ways to fulfill your mitzva of kiddush. If you had no food ...
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5 votes
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Using the Coravin Wine Preserver on shabbat

Assuming the question is only regarding the insertion of the needle on shabbos, and not placed before shabbos, this particular device presents a few issues within the prohibition of “creating a ...
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5 votes
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Hatov vehametiv on a kos shel bracha?

Magen Avraham (175 sk 0) rules that the fourth blessing of the Bentching (that of HaTov VeHaMeitiv) exempts the new wine in the cup used for Bentching from another HaTov VeHaMeitiv. Mishna Berura (...
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5 votes

Does the halacha require that even someone who does not like meat and wine must consume them on Yom Tov?

(adapted from R' Josh Flug's YUTorah article "The Mitzvah of Simchat Yom Tov") The Beit Yosef (Orach Chaim 529:5) questions the Rambam's assertion that one must eat meat on Yom Tov (still ...
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  • 11.8k
5 votes
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When to make kiddush at a Seder with no wine?

Shulchan Arukh OC 483 מי שאין לו יין בליל פסח מקדש על הפת שמברך המוציא ובוצע ומניח ידיו עליו עד שגומר הקידוש ומברך על אכילת מצה ואוכל ואחר כך אוכל שאר ירקות ומסלק השלחן ואומר מה נשתנה וכל ההגדה עד ...
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5 votes
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R’ Hurewitz’s response to prof. Louis Ginzburg about grape juice

Rabbi Yitzhok Simhah Horowitz’s written response/challenge of Prof. Ginzberg’s responsum was published in his commentary Yad HaLevi on Rambam’s Sefer HaMitzvot, beginning s.v. ונראה.
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  • 11.8k
4 votes

Why can't we drink wine that was made by a non Jew but by machine

Probably because of what the Shulchan Aruch, Yoreh De'ah says in סימן קכה - דין יין הבא מכח עובד כוכבים וכח כחו ב: כֹּחַ כֹּחוֹ כְּכֹחוֹ דָּמִי. וְאִם הוּא כֹּחַ כֹּחַ כֹּחוֹ, כְּגוֹן קוֹרַת ...
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4 votes
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The Brakhah 'Ha-Tov ve-ha-Meitiv' and Wine

Am I remembering right? Yes. Is it the practice nowadays to make make the brakhah in this situation? I've seen people do it and personally do it regularly. it's mentioned in the Kitzur Shulchan ...
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4 votes
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Vinegar and Nazir

Yes, see Bamidbar 6:3 ג מיין ושכר יזיר, חמץ יין וחמץ שכר לא ישתה he shall abstain from wine and strong drink: he shall drink no vinegar of wine, or vinegar of strong drink (JPS 1917) For elaboration,...
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4 votes

Is pasteurization an adequate stand-in for something being mevushal?

Wine may be pasteurized at different temperatures. Igros Moshe maintains that above 175 degrees Fahrenheit the juice is considered mevushal. The Tzelemer Rav maintains that it is not mevushal. The ...
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  • 7,440
4 votes
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Fruit Leather in Gemara Sukkah

Sukka (49a-b) describes this and mentions that the young Kohanim would clear out the congealed wine from the shitin (a large cavern beneath the altar, into which the libations would run, see Rashi 49a ...
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