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Welcome to the 2024 Jewish Link Wine Guide

Thanks to having met with our partners and many of our enthusiastic readers at our inaugural Jewish Link Wine Guide Grand Tasting, we prepare to go to print with many new memories of good fellowship and shared experiences. We also use this time to remember that a Jewish community dealing with a war in Israel and with quite a bit of Jew hate on the home front means that it is even more important this year to support kosher and Israeli brands; not just of wine but of all types of products.

That is one of the reasons we are forgoing our “Winery of the Year” and “Innovator of the Year” designations and replacing them, this year only, with “Hakarat HaTov” awards. We strongly hoped to encourage our Israeli winemakers to continue to produce and reach customers in Chutz la'Aretz, and we did not want the war combined with the previous year’s pause in production due to shemitah to disadvantage them in any way. The Hakarat Hatov awards are our small way of thanking the winemakers who made special efforts to bring their wines to us in the U.S. this year; and are sharing stories of their struggles and efforts.

Even with the challenges of the past year, this tasting season we had 560+ bottles as entries in our ranked tastings, and many new types of wine and varietals added to our lists. We also added bubbly rankings this year in a big way. We continue to be proud of our blind tasting process in which every wine is covered and labeled before being presented to our judges. The goal of blind tastings is for our judges to not be swayed, in any way, by their personal views on brands they have tried previously, or on any other factor other than the liquid in the glass.

We’ve continued to engineer our rankings and sought to improve our top 10 varietal lists, including “best worldwide lists” for rosé, cabernet, merlot, chardonnay, sauvignon blanc, “Israeli blends” and others. We hope you enjoy these lists and find them useful as you shop for Pesach and throughout the year.

The judges ranked their wines on a personally calibrated 100 point scale, which they initially developed together before the tastings for the first magazine. We are exceedingly grateful and fortunate to have had all five of our founding judges return to taste for us for the fourth year in a row, and that we were able to add Gary Wartels this year as well. Thanks to Gary as well as to Yossie Horwitz, Jeff Katz, Greg Raykher, Daphna Roth and Yeruchum Rosenberg, who all share a passion for supporting the kosher wine industry as a whole. We continue to grow and learn together and in our individual studies.

We are grateful our efforts in previous years have been well-received and as we conclude our preparations this year, it is with a strong sense of achdut (unity) that we continue to toil toward something important. As we celebrate the brands which grace our Shabbat tables every week, we continue to see the importance of supporting the innovators and hard workers behind these brands. Every bottle of kosher wine represents an incredible amount of work on behalf of the consumer, and we could not be more grateful to celebrate and recommend so many within this beautiful community.

With best wishes for a

Chag Kasher V’Sameach,

Elizabeth Kratz


Meet the JUDGES

L-R: Yossie Horowitz, Jeff Katz, Greg Raykher, Yeruchum Rosenberg, Gary Wartels, Daphna Roth

Yossie Horwitz

Growing up in a tee-totaling household in Jerusalem, Yossie Horwitz didn’t have much early exposure to wine. That all changed one Passover night when he tasted his first quality dry red wine. A lifelong passion was stoked and by the time he was 30 and living in New York City, he was penning a weekly email blast to family and friends sharing his varied recommendations. Today, “Yossie’s Corkboard” goes out to more than 11,000 subscribers around the world and covers the ever-expanding world of kosher wine. Tasting more than 4,000 different kosher wines each year keeps this deal-making attorney-by day quite busy. Sign up at and follow on instagram at yossies_corkboard. Yossie is also a JLWG contributor.

Jeff Katz

Jeff Katz has been collecting, tasting and sharing alcohol with friends for 20 years. With an original interest in mixology and spirits, Jeff’s appreciation for wine evolved 10 years ago when his wife handed him a glass of Russian River Chardonnay. Since then, Jeff has become a member of multiple kosher wine clubs and has made good friends with many oenophiles. Jeff enjoys speaking with winemakers and hearing about their journeys which led them to where they are today. When not entertaining friends and family, Jeff works in global supply chain and customs management. Jeff lives in New Jersey with his amazing wife Eva and two beautiful daughters.

Greg Raykher

Greg Raykher has been tasting, collecting and learning about wine for over 20 years. He met some of his closest friends through the old Daniel Rogov chat group and many wine tasting groups that followed. Greg is passionate about wine education and loves following the growth of kosher wine world, in Israel as well as in many other parts of the world. When not learning about wine, Greg works in finance, with a focus on zero-carbon renewable energy projects. He lives in Teaneck and shares his love of wine exploration with his wife Daphna, a fellow judge on The Jewish Link Wine Guide. Greg has received the Wine Spirits and Education Trust (WSET) Level 3 Award in Wines (with Distinction) and is currently a WSET Diploma Candidate.

Yeruchum Rosenberg

Yeruchum Rosenberg is a wine enthusiast who spends his days in the world of technology and finance. He has been involved in the kosher wine scene for over 20 years. He loves family, friends, food and wine—preferably together. He enjoys cooking and frequenting Rosh Chodesh clubs. He lives in Teaneck with his wife Michal and their family.

Gary Wartels

After over 20 years in senior leadership positions in the nonprofit and public sectors, Gary pivoted to his passion and built two leading wine and spirits stores: Skyview Wines, “the best wine store in the Bronx”, which he owned for nearly 20 years, and his current venture Columbus Avenue Wines and Spirits, a “destination” for fine wines and spirits located on the Upper West Side of Manhattan. Columbus Wines is known for its unbeatable value, its community involvement and charitable endeavors. Originally from Los Angeles, California, Gary and his wife Carolyn have two adult children, Noah and Rebecca Wartels.

Daphna Roth

Daphna Roth has been tasting and enjoying wine for over 30 years. She first introduced her husband, Greg, to wine with a gift of the “Wine For Dummies” book. They have been exploring exciting kosher wines together ever since. Little did she know that their wine journey would include being a judge for The Jewish Link Wine Guide. Daphna works as an adult neuropsychologist, specializing in evaluations, in private practice in Teaneck where she lives with her family. Daphna is a candidate for the Wine Spirits and Education Trust (WSET) Level 2 Award in Wines.



L-R: Elizabeth Kratz, Joshua London, Arnie Draiman, Michal Rosenberg, Kenneth Friedman, Gamliel Kronemer

Elizabeth Kratz

Elizabeth Kratz is associate publisher and editor of The Jewish Link, and founding editor of The Jewish Link Wine Guide. Elizabeth has received the Wine Spirits and Education Trust (WSET) Level 2 Award in Wines (with merit). She is a WSET Level 3 candidate. Elizabeth proud to champion great kosher wines from all over the world. She and her family live in Bergenfield, New Jersey.

Joshua London

Joshua E. London has been drinking, writing, consulting and speaking professionally about kosher wines & distilled spirits for well over 20 years. For over a dozen years Josh wrote a popular weekly column on kosher wines and booze that appeared in several Jewish publications, and his writing has appeared in a wide variety of both Jewish and non-Jewish media. In addition to writing for the Jewish Link Wine Guide, Josh continues to serve as a consulting editor. When not focused on wines and spirits, Josh works in pro-Israel advocacy. Josh lives with his family in the U.K.

Arnie Draiman

Arnie Draiman enjoys a great glass of wine, and is a philanthropic consultant helping people and foundations give their tzedaka money away wisely, efficiently and effectively for over 25 years. He also frequently reports from Jerusalem for The Jewish Link.

Michal Rosenberg

Michal Rosenberg is associate editor at The Jewish Link and managing and production editor of The Jewish Link Wine Guide. Her husband Yeruchum introduced her to wine 20 years ago and she’s joined him on his wine journey ever since. She’s learned a lot over the years, but still lets him pick out the bottles they drink.

Kenneth Friedman

Dr. Kenneth Friedman, WSET Level 3, is a longtime wine writer, historian, and consultant. He channels his passion for food and wine into creating exploratory tastings, having hosted many international winemakers along the way. His wine columns and reviews can be found on Instagram @kosherwinetastings

Gamliel Kronemer

Gamliel Kronemer has been writing for more than 15 years about kosher wine, spirits, cocktails and food in a number of Jewish newspapers and magazines, including The Jewish Link. In 2005, when Gamliel started writing regularly on the subject, he recalled that “back then, most newspapers wrote about kosher wine at most twice a year, with headlines like ‘Kosher Wine: It’s Not Your Mama’s Manischewitz Anymore.’ Watching the kosher wine world blossom has been utterly amazing, and I feel fortunate to have had a front row seat.” Gamliel lives with his wife, Jessica, in Silver Spring, Maryland.


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