HOME > Chowhound > Kosher >


Kosher Food and Wine Experience 2012

Is anyone going this year? Last year's was amazing.

It is definitley not to be missed for you kosher foodies out there. It is on February 13 and looks like there are not many tickets left.


  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. I will be returning as the lure of this paean to gluttony is too strong for me to resist.

    2 Replies
    1. re: Kosher Critic

      I couldn't said it better myself! It was a lot of fun last year -- hoping for the same this year. I noticed that the Prime Grill group and Abigael's were not listed for this year. Too bad if that is the case.

      1. re: flo220

        I also noticed that the posted list of food vendors was smaller than last year but maybe there will be some late additions.

    2. Does it continue through the evening? I mean, is it still good if you can't get there until 7:30 or 8?

      2 Replies
      1. I am hoping to be at the LA one, if my friend comes up with a ticket. Being in the industry, the draw is seeing what's out there in wine, but I do enjoy Todd's creations. The first year, they clearly outshone the wines, but last year, the food played a supporting role.

        6 Replies
        1. re: ganeden

          Where and when is the one in LA? Is it open to the public or just industry people?

          1. re: mamaleh

            ooh! ooh! Take me! Take me!

            Seriously ganeden, do you have any information about it?

            1. re: SoCal Mother

              I found an International Food and Wine Festival that Herzog is participating in, but it's not an clear that it's an all-kosher event.

              1. re: SoCal Mother

                I cannot link to my blog - as that is illegal - go figure. So here is a horrible copy and paste from my blog - again very SORRY for this long content! ONLY kosher wines and only Royal wines, but many are very good! My blog is: kosherwinemusings.com - I hope that is OK :-)

                Once again Herzog is putting on its massive food and wine festival on February 15th, 2012 (MAN I still cannot get used to that number) starting at 6PM. The festival is a great place to get to taste some of those wines that are either beyond your price budget, or hard to find wines, or ones that you pass by on the shelves because you just have no idea how good they are. They will be pouring more than 100 bottles of wines, so be sure to get there early, before the crowds show up. There will be a few new faces this year, with a couple of new wine makers showing up, and a few surprises (think new kosher wineries), from what I hear. Of course, there is also the food TO DIE for, from Mr. Aarons and his staff of insanely competent chefs! So please be sure to BUY your tickets here (coupon code below). The wineries pouring will include; Flam Winery (newly Kosher), Tulip (also newly kosher), many wonderful French brands, Barkan Winery, Binyamina Winery, Carmel Winery, Castel Winery, etc. Tickets are going fast so grab one or more while you can. Like last year they will be pouring wine and spirits – from around the world. Last year they poured cognac and scotch, and the display/table was “well attended”.

                Please note the change of scenery! The event this year will be in Los Angeles BABY!!! That is right you heard me correctly! You do not need to drive 50 minutes to and from your home; rather you can drink and eat to your heart’s content, and then crash at one of the many rooms in the lovely Hyatt Regency Century Plaza! Herzog is working out a deal with the Hyatt and will hopefully have great deals for staying there on the website soon.

                The last four years that we have enjoyed attending this event it has been getting a bit more crowded each year. This year with all the room that the Hyatt has to offer, the hope is that there will be more than enough room to roam and taste the aromas of the world and the flavors of Todd Aaron’s world renowned Tierra Sur Restaurant. Please DO NOT worry, just because the event is at the Hyatt does NOT mean the Hyatt will be doing the catering, rather ALL food preparation will be handled by the incomparable staff of Tierra Sur Restaurant. The food will be prepared on the premises, just as if it was still in Oxnard!

                Yes, Yes I left the best for last. Herzog is giving out a coupon out for 10% off the ticket price – use the coupon (on the page after you add the tickets to the cart) KOSHER.

                Every year we go and every year we are so excited because it gives us a chance to taste the wines and to see what to buy for the upcoming holidays. So grab you mouse and start clicking and we look forward to seeing you all the 2012 Herzog International Food & Wine Festival.

                This is a copy of the blog posting from Herzog’s web site:

                Join Herzog Wine Cellars in celebrating fine wines and cuisine at the 2012 International Food & Wine Festival. Year after year, this massive event has highlighted choice wines and spirits brought in from around the globe. This year’s festival is coming to Los Angeles, CA for the first time, and is the perfect place to taste amazing, rare and hard to find wines and spirits. More than 100 labels will be poured from Royal Wine Corp’s diverse international portfolio, all in the sophisticated setting of the Hyatt Regency Century Plaza.

                1. re: Kosher Wine Musings

                  Weird. I tried to reply to your posting from home last night and it was missing. Anyway KWMusings, thanks for the info!!!

                  It's a weeknight...(sigh)

                  1. re: SoCal Mother

                    Well, if you are a member of the trade (or have a friend in the trade who would do you a favor) , contact David Whitmore at Herzog, (805) 883-1560 for trade registration for the 1:00 pm trade tasting. Then, get a sitter and come back for the consumer tasting, which you can probably get into free with your trade pass. It's what many in the trade will be doing, and as far as cost, you can't beat free for a wonderful time. For me, the draw is the chance to draw from broad cross-section of wines, seeing what is new in the industry in terms not only of type and value, but also keeping track of stylistic trends, and the overall evolution of style in particular wines. But for others, it's a good time with great food, a time to socialize with others with mutual interests, to meet new people and get their take on things. Much easier to keep track of wines during the trade tasting, which can be crowded, but there is a quantum difference between that and the consumer tasting, which is a madhouse. It's amusing to watch "Kosher Wine Musings" trying to taste discerningly during the consumer tasting, and he may be the only one with that capability- certainly not me.

        2. They just posted the tasting guide. Getting excited.


          1. If I have to get there really late, like not until 8, is it still worth going? Will there be tings to taste? or does all the food disappear within the first hour or so?

            8 Replies
            1. re: AdinaA

              Last year there was still plenty of food at the end. We should all wear name tags :)

              1. re: pitagirl

                Thanks. Would you really wear a tag? Are you a food blogger?

                And, how many tickets do they sell? 100? 1000?

                1. re: AdinaA


                  Hope you have a ticket as its sold out and they do not sell tickets at the door.

                  Not sure how many tickets they sell, but it is very crowded. My understanding is the one change this year is that the trade can come in the afternoon for free, so it may be less crowded if all those folks go home.

                  1. re: njkosher

                    Thanks. That's interesting about the food professionals going in the afternoon.

                    And yes, I bought a ticket. It's just, so many things to do, so little time to eat...

                    1. re: AdinaA

                      The trade is earlier, but they still sold out a\all the public tickets - MEANING get there EARLY, get in line, and concentrate your efforts on the top wines you ant to taste, and then work backwards from there, to the ones you are less interested in.

                      YOU MUST have a game plan - or you will look like a spinning top going from table to table without a clear mission.

                      My 2 cents...

                      1. re: Kosher Wine Musings

                        think they were allowing for 2000 people this year

                        1. re: pitagirl

                          I agree with Kosher Wine Musings. Last year I was there at 6.10 and there already 40 or so people ahead of us. They let you in, in groups so you still lost time getting in.
                          If you can print the guide from the website to see what wine and food they have. Decide in advance what you want on both. Some of the better wines will not be poured all night and may be gone in the first hour. As an example, got to the Castel stand after one hour, and managed to get the last drop of the Grand Vin.
                          Same for the food, the better restaurants were done with their food earlier, while even at 9.30 Pomegranate still had plenty of sausage.

                          1. re: njkosher

                            Getting there early is not an option. I can go late, or not at all.

            2. It's quite a scene.

              For anyone who is in the situation I was in (holding a ticket but unable to arrive until close to 8pm) my advice would be go anyway. A few items had run out early, but most stations were serving, pouring plentifully.

              I am unable to do justice to the amazing array of wines.

              I did eat an astonishing slice of pastrami from Pomegranate. Heavenly.

              The other wonderful table was Pardes. They offered two items. A perfect canape, tatare served on a thin slice of cucumber arranged like a work of art. And tiny lemon meringue tarts with a tiny pool of raspberry coulis. Astonishing. Memorable. Brooklyn rules.

              Everything else I had, and I had a bite of almost everything on offer, felt like very nicely done versions of familiar things. Only the offerings I mentioned were special.

              5 Replies
              1. re: AdinaA

                Thanks for the review. Next time I am in NYC I can try the pastrami from Pomegranate. I do so miss Essex on Coney.

                What did you mean by "Brooklyn rules?" Is that "Brooklyn RULES!" or something like "We play by Brooklyn Rules?"

                1. re: SoCal Mother

                  Only that the best food (Pomegranate and Pardes) came from Brooklyn.

                  Brooklyn RULES!

                2. re: AdinaA

                  I would echo AdinaA's identification of the three best foods. Otherwise, I would have liked a bit more variety - eventually, it seemed as though every vendor was offering some version of slow-cooked beef.

                  Very tasty wines.

                  1. re: AdinaA

                    I have to disagree with Adina about Pom. I just felt that they offered nothing special - Kishka - cholent, corned beef..... etc.. Just showed nothing out of the box - just regular shmorg/kiddush food.

                    My favorites were:

                    Gemstone - the smoked turkey and the bbq brisket were to die for and the roasted beets were amazing (I don't eat fish so I can't comment on the tuna or herring bar). They also had 4/5 different cholents and the cassoulet one was by far the best thing I ate all night.

                    La Marais: had a skirt steak on a bed of salad that was simple and perfect.

                    Nothing else really stood out to me. I really don't get the people that were eating the deli hero from Subsational! Why waste stomach space!!!!!

                    As far as the wines - always great to try new things and the mixed drinks in the dessert area were amazing.

                    Glad I went - and once again I feel Gemstone/Got Cholent wins - hands down.

                    1. re: AdinaA

                      Last night was great, but the food was not as good as last year.

                      The standout dish was definitely the amazing tartare from Pardes. Even convinced my squeamish sister to try it, and she loved it. The lemon meringue pies were great as well. Also surprisingly, the cassoulet and dafina from Gemstone were great (Ari will love to hear this coming from me), and the jicama, apple and beet skewers were good (not as good as the amazing ginger fruit skewers from last year).

                      Actually, the liver in wine sauce from Pomegranate was great. I always laugh because it seems like they pull out their Hells Kitchen alum at these events to give them some street cred.

                      Oh yeah, wines were great as well.

                      Overall it was a great night.

                    2. So KFWE was last night and, as always, I thought it was a great event - kudos to Gary J. and Royal for the hard work and all their efforts and wishing all the West Coast folks a tremendous event tomorrow - enjoy. My newsletter this week will hopefully have a more detailed description of the event and some of the wine tasting highlights but I wanted to give a brief rundown of the event and some of the wines, a number of which weren't listed on the posted wine list.

                      In a slight departure from past years, there was a early afternoon session for the trade from 12-4 which gave those attending the ability to chat with the varied winemakers in a much more intimate setting and have a more relaxed environment to do some serious tastings. At 4 they closed shop for people to recuperate and then reopened around 6 for an hour of press (although many of the press attended the earlier event including Alice Feiring and Howard Goldberg, both delightful individuals I was super-excited to meet, chat and taste wines with) before the event was opened to the general public at 7. Despite the throngs of attendees, for the bulk of the evening it wasn't crazy crowded and most of the wines/winery representatives were accessible to all.

                      There was a really long list of winemakers in attendance, all of whom are listed in the book including Assaf and Sasson from Binyamina, Yaakov Berg from Psagot, Yoram and his wife Ilana from Alexander, the entire Covenant team of Jeff, Jodie and Jonathon, Jürgen from Capcanes, Pierre from Netofa (and Royal's French Collection), Joe from Herzog, Irit and Ed from Barkan and other winery representatives including Adam from Carmel/Yatir, Dr. Moises from Elvi, Yossi Shor from 1848, Gilad Flam and Mayer from Shiloh. As every year and despite how exhausted many of them were, they all had time for any and all questions and seemed to enjoy discussing the wines (more early on than later :-)).

                      As far as wines, the list is endless (see my Thursday newsletter for more detail) but for me, some of the highlights included:

                      Castel, Rose, 2011 and Grand Vin, 2009
                      Shilo, Legend, 2009 and Mosiac, 2006
                      Elvi, Clos Mesorah, 2009 - Elvi's new flagship wine (a blend of Carignan, Grenache and Syrah) deserving of its status
                      Two amazing white wines from Bokobsa - Pouilly Fumé Maltaverne and a Sancerre Chavignol - crisp and incredible.
                      A mini-Capcanes vertical of the 2008-2010 vintages and the new 2010 La Flor
                      The 2005 Le Crock and Leoville - I-N-C-R-E-D-I-B-L-E
                      Binyamina LH Gewurz 2009 (I tasted and wrote about this before but was very happy to see it finally here)
                      Psagot Prat (port-style)
                      Laurent Perrier Brut (I enjoyed far more than the more expensive Rose)
                      The new Covenant wines, especially 2011 SB which, unlike the 2010, didn't do full Malo and was crisper w/ better acidity).
                      A surprise treat - the 2003 Covenant!
                      Yatir Forest 2007 - 'nuff said.
                      Flam, Reserve, Syrah, 2010

                      The food was great and I in my opinion has been a really successful addition, really enhancing the event and making it more inclusive. Way to much to taste (or list) everything but some favorites included the Po' Boys from Bistro 1310, BBQ Ox Tail from ETC Steakhouse, the crazy decadent Chocolate Mousse from Finchi, Corned Beef and Pastrami from Pomegranate, Smokehouse Brisket from Gemstone Catering, Jack's Chorizo, La Marais' Smoked Duck Breast and off course the incredible Espresso from Noi Due, Ribeye Tartare from Downtown Brooklyn and the Dunk Confit Meatball and Veal Shepard Pie from Silverleaf Caterers.

                      Very little complaints other than a few listed wines were no-shows (Valendraud, Segal Unfiltered, Psagot 2011 Chardonnay, Goose Bay 2011 Pinot Grigio). All in all - really well run, managed and enjoyable.

                      Enjoy tomorrow's event in LA and look forward to the reports!