Wine is traditionally served at Seders, the ritual meals held the first two nights of Passover, a holiday that begins this year the evening of March 27. But if you’re trying to find a perfect wine to serve at a Seder, it can be as difficult as choosing one wine for Thanksgiving. Both festive dinners are challenging because the menu can encompass a wide variety of foods including beef, chicken, lamb and fish as well as sweet and savory sides. If you must choose just one wine, consider pinot noir because of its versatility. The following are two examples from California and Israel. Both wines are best enjoyed slightly chilled.
Herzog Lineage 2018 Pinot Noir, Clarksburg, California
Bought • Costco, 301 Highlands Boulevard Drive, in March for $15.49
Description • The newest addition to the Herzog portfolio, the Lineage line is composed mostly of single-vineyard and single-varietal wines. The Lineage pinot noir comes from the Clarksburg American Viticultural Area, located along the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta. Soft and flavorful, this is a medium-bodied pinot noir that’s spicy and a little earthy. A lightly oaked red, it tastes of black cherries with notes of cedar and vanilla. It ends with a long, dry finish.
Barkan Vineyards Classic, 2018, Pinot Noir, Negev, Israel
Bought • Schnucks, 8867 Ladue Road, in March for $11.99
Description • Although the harsh environment of the Negev desert may make it seem like an unlikely wine-producing area, innovative growing techniques are yielding wines that are often well received by critics. For example, this entry-level, medium-bodied pinot noir is considered a best buy by Wine Enthusiast. A fruitier, less complex wine than the Lineage, it’s an easy-to-drink, unoaked red that tastes of juicy strawberries and other red berries with a hint of spice and dark chocolate.