By Rochelle Maruch Miller
Are you ready to raise your kosher wine expectations? Acclaimed by discerning kosher wine drinkers, The River Wine has been setting standards of excellence as a premier importer, distributor, and producer of the highest quality wine at the best prices. Committed to offering superior wines in the United States from across the world, with a focus on Israel, The River is dedicated to maintaining a small, yet diverse portfolio of wineries. The Twin Suns line of wines is a labor of love between The River and brothers Shimon and Gabriel Weiss, the renowned winemakers of Shirah Wine. The partners have dared to tread where no kosher winemaker has before. So impressed are wine experts with the quality and taste of the Twin Suns line, they are in consensus that it not be confined to “the kosher section” which is precisely why you will find Twin Suns on the California shelf as well! In states such as Minnesota and Michigan, Twin Suns is sold as strictly California wine.
“My husband and I were inspired to name our company ‘Twin Suns’ for our twin boys, Ivri and Eitan, who were born at the same time as The River,” said Larissa Nahari, who, together with her husband Ami, are the proprietors of The River. “We launched Twin Suns with the intent to deliver the high quality California wines at an incredible price point for a revolutionary value in kosher wine.”
And they do deliver! Consider this your private taste sampling of Twin Suns’ extraordinary wines, each one a veritable sensory delight. We’ll begin with Twin Suns’ Chardonnay 2016. The finest Lodi white grapes create a beautiful wine with top notes of banana and flavors of papaya, pineapple, and other tropical fruits.
Savor the exquisite taste of Cabernet Sauvignon 2016. This 100% Cabernet made from Lodi grapes displays classic characteristic flavors of black cherry, incense, and vanilla toasty oak, and fine tannic structure.
Syrah/Cabernet 2015. 90% Syrah, 10% Cabernet, Paso Robles Syrah offers a fruit-flavored approach with the body and softness of Cabernet.
Rose Reserve 2016. A blend of Central Coast vineyards highest fruit. Opens with scents of fresh cut flowers; citrus, and sweet strawberries play on the tongue. Neutral barrel fermented for a soft feel. Finish is smooth and crisp. Enjoy chilled.
Zinfandel Reserve 2016. This 100% Zinfandel offers the best of the Paso Robles Estrella District. Aged 16 months in French Oak barrels, 25% new. Smoky, full-bodied hints of peppercorn and fresh herbs.
Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve 2015. 90% Cabernet Sauvignon, 10% Syrah, Aged 12 months. French and Hungarian Oak, a touch of Paso Robles Syrah adds body and full complexity. Look for notes of cassis, red cherry, and black currant.
Syrah Reserve 2014. 100% Syrah, aged 19 months in French Oak; featuring notes of savory herbs and black pepper. Medium-bodied, well-balanced between fruit and acidity.
Grand Select 2014. Grand Select is a blend of Merlot, Cabernet, and Cabernet Franc, all from vineyards in the Paso Robles region. With spicy clove on the nose, and ripe plum and cherry on the palate, a well-balanced finish rounds out this wine, bursting with flavor aromatics.
Founded in 2009 by brothers Shimon and Gabriel Weiss, Shirah Wine is world renown as the highest quality kosher wine, focusing on varietals, blends, and other styles that are less known to the kosher wine-drinking community. Their trendy labels and ultra-modern wine production allows for kosher wine drinkers to explore new and unique elements during the wine-drinking experience, elevating it to an exciting level. Shirah Wine works with very small batches influenced mainly by the most highly regarded producers in California. California has earned the reputation of making some of the finest wine in the nation.
Currently, California has a variety of kosher wines in the Golden State. As the largest wine producer of any state in the country, it contains a number of key wine-growing regions that produce millions of liters of delicious table wines and a growing number of high quality kosher wines. California kosher wines are sensory wines that are controlled and delicious, with a juicy and fresh taste that cannot be produced anywhere else.
“We started our business seven years ago and we are in the fourth vintage,” Larissa told this author. We started out importing wines from Israel, as my husband is Israeli and wanted to stay connected. He served in an exclusive unit in the Israeli army and is a graduate of the Management School of Bar Ilan. Through word-of-mouth, different wineries started reaching out to us.
What makes Twin Suns unique is that it is made by Shirah Wine, which gives it cachet. We try to fill a void in the kosher wine community. There aren’t many high quality wines out there at this price point.”
For Larissa, the wine business is quite rewarding. “It can be a lot of fun—visiting the wineries, trying new wines. We’re not selling nuts and bolts. We’re selling something we are very passionate about.”
It is that passion that has catapulted Twin Suns to the forefront of the kosher wine community. “We are very excited that the winemakers have declared our recently released Cabernet 2016 to be the best Cabernet by far,” Larissa says. “Don’t stick to your old wine; try something new!”
Are you ready to rethink kosher wine?
Rochelle Maruch Miller is a contributing editor for the Five Towns Jewish Times. She is a journalist, creative media consultant, lecturer, and educator who writes for magazines, newspapers, and websites. She welcomes your comments at Rochellemiller04@aol.com.