The drinks are on Kedem


There was plenty to drink a L'Chaim to on Monday evening when Kedem Europe staged its biggest UK kosher wine festival at the Park Lane Hotel in London's West End.

Leading wine writers were among 600 people who enjoyed a taste of premium wines from Israel, Europe, America, South America, Australia and New Zealand.

Those who like their spirits made a beeline for the Scotch whisky stall offering a selection of single malts. And being a Jewish event, a generous buffet was provided.

Kedem Europe director Morris Herzog reported that the experts did not stray far from the table showcasing wines from the highly regarded Spanish producer Capcanes.

The Herzog Wine Cellars display was also a popular stopping point, notably for a sample of the Wernecke Vineyard Clone # Six, "a fine wine from a premium Californian vineyard".

The cheapest wine on display retails for under £13. At the other end of the price scale, a Chaeteau Leoville 2005 goes for more than £150.

But Kedem maintains that there are many bottles in the £20 category "as good as their non-kosher counterparts and often better".

Mr Herzog said the kosher wine market had undergone "a revolution in the last 20 years. It has moved into world class, with wines that would do well in any international competition."

Premium kosher wines were being stocked by specialist retailers and prestige stores such as Selfridges and Harrods.

Inclusion on restaurant wine lists was key to building on growing demand from non-Jews.

"A customer will enjoy a wine with a meal and will then try to find out where he can buy it," Mr Herzog explained.

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