Whiskey, Liquor (additonal), Chodosh Update and More

1.    More on Whiskies and Liquor
2.    Chodosh Information
3.    Machane Yehuda (Shuk) Walking Tour

papagaio-wiskey1.    More on Whiskies and Liquor
Following the release of my recent article addressing whiskey and liquors, the email in-box has been abuzz and many of you have expressed interest in obtaining lists of approved, authorized and whatever hard drinks. Anyway, here are a number of URL links to such lists from kashrut agencies. 

In the article, the message I tried to convey was that there are some liquors with actual kosher supervision. Liquors without supervision should not be used. Regarding whiskey, while most do not have supervision, some are ‘approved’ or ‘authorized’ or ‘acceptable’,  but not actually having a hechsher as you will see in the lists.

The problems raised also apply to beers, especially flavored beers, and flavored vodka, and some say plain unflavored too, while others disagree.

There are varying opinions and as is the case in other matters of halacha, one should consult one’s local orthodox rabbi for instruction as how to act.

CRC
http://www.crcweb.org/liquor_list.php

Rav Semelson [of the Jerusalem Religious Council]
http://whiskykosher10.blogspot.com/

Star-K
http://www.star-k.org/cons-appr-liquor.htm

OU articles
http://www.oukosher.org/index.php/common/article/wine_is_fine_but_liquorbrandy_cognac_and_other_distilled_wine_spirits/

http://oukosher.org/index.php/learn/article/scotch_whiskey/

Scroll K
http://www.scrollk.org/Alchbev.html

Yes, there are more, but this gives you a place to start. Also take notice; many of the lists available on the internet are posted anonymously, not something I would rely on.

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2.    Chodosh Information
Regarding General Mills/Nestle cereals sold in Israel. The following is only valid with packages that have an OU hashgacha for kashrus, although the OU does not certify the Yoshon aspects: Cheerios, Honey Nut Cheerios and Fiber 1, the Chodosh code is Aug 2 10 (372 days after packing).

For Multi-Grain Cheerios the code is June 1 10.

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3. Shuk Walking  Tour

machane-yehuda1Monday’s (Sept. 14th) Machane Yehuda Shuk walking tours:

There are still a number of slots for the 9:30am tour available.

The 5:30pm tour is booked solid -  sold out!

4 Comments

  • Nesanel Peterman
    September 10, 2009 - 14:30 | Permalink

    The London Beis Din [LBD] has a printed and on-line Kashrus Guide that includes a lot of information about whiskies and other liquors. Given that all genuine Scotch Whisky is produced in Scotland within the geographical area of the Beis Din, it is a good place to start. The printed version of the guide has a section dealing with the issue of sherry casks and wine cask finishes the conclusion of which is “The London Beth Din continues to allow all types of Scotch Whisky based on Teshuvos Igros Moshe”.

    Europe has a quite different ‘hechsher’ culture from the US and
    Israel. You can go into many haredi, litvish or chassidish, homes in Europe and find a range of products without any hechsher but which appear on locally produced ‘approved’ lists. Whisky is certainly one of those items. The kosher market there is not big enough to support manufacturers paying the costs of hechsherim on many products.

    So far as the LBD generally is concerned, their policy regarding
    cholov yisroel is basically the same as I understand that of the OU, i.e. they are not makpid on cholov yisroel and anything KosherLBD Dairy is cholov stam. It is important to note as well that whilst it is a highly respected Beis Din, the LBD would not in Israeli terms be called a haredi Beis Din.

    The LBD Kosher Guide link is:

    http://www.kosher.org.uk

  • Yehoshua
    September 10, 2009 - 14:51 | Permalink

    Thank you for the nice article with helpful links. I would like to comment on one point. The author states that,

    “Regarding whiskey, while most do not have supervision, some are ‘approved’ or ‘authorized’ or ‘acceptable’, but not actually having a hechsher as you will see in the lists.”

    I want to point out that food or drinks do *NOT* need a hechsher to be kosher.

    For example, if I go to the grocery store in the US and buy raw green peas, those peas do not need a hechsher. Similarly, I was informed by the Chicago Rabbinical Council that frozen peas do not need a hechsher if the only ingredients on the label are “peas” & “salt.”

    The terms ‘approved,’ ‘authorized,’ or ‘acceptable’ from these kashrus agencies means *Kosher* according to the standards of the agency.

    The Star-K puts it like this:

    “The question is, can we, in accordance with halacha and in good conscience, consume beverages that do not have any hashgocha? Obviously the best case scenario would be to purchase alcoholic beverages with a reliable hechsher. There are, in fact, a few selections that have reliable kosher certification, but these are few and far between. When research into ingredients and production practices indicates that there are no apparent kashrus problems with the product, then halacha permits us to follow the concept of holchin achar harov, that we may assume that the majority is the scenario with which we are dealing.”

    May we be zocheh to learn the depths of halacha and walk accordingly in Hashem’s ways.

  • September 11, 2009 - 11:01 | Permalink

    Yehoshua, not sure what CRC is saying. I have personal experience as mashgiach seeing that same production line can produce innocuous peas and tarfus. eg frozen seafood products. The equipment has blios issur and cleaning system not sufficient for hagala. The issue is more complex than this comment forum allows, but clear to me must have reliable hechsher on all canned and frozen goods

  • Ira
    September 11, 2009 - 14:28 | Permalink

    There is a big difference between liquor and liqueur. Liquor is a synonym for whiskey.

    A liqueur is an alcoholic beverage that has been flavored with fruit, herbs, nuts, spices, flowers, or cream and bottled with added sugar. Liqueurs are typically quite sweet; they are usually not aged for long but may have resting periods during their production to allow flavors to marry.

    In some parts of the world people use the words cordial and liqueur interchangeably.

    In any event what you have been calling liquor is really liqueur.

    A distilled beverage, liquor, or spirit is a drinkable liquid containing ethanol that is produced by means of distilling fermented grain, fruit, or vegetables. This excludes undistilled fermented beverages such as beer and wine.

    Ref.: Wikipedia

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