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Chapter 49: 1-3
The Blessings for Wine

1. Before partaking of wine, one recites the blessing borey pri hagofen, and afterwards, al hagefen. These blessings are recited regardless of whether:a) the wine is still in the process of fermentation, b) it has just flowed out from the grapes on its own, c) it has been flavored with honey or spices - kondition, d) bitter herbs [absinthe] have been added to it.

Even [wine which has begun to sour and] smells like vinegar, if it has the flavor of wine, is considered to be wine with regard to the blessing. However, if it has become so sour that most people would no longer drink it, there is a question regarding the blessing. Hence, one should not drink such wine unless one first recites a blessing over good wine. (Even though the blessing shehakol could be recited before partaking of the sour wine, there is still a question regarding the b'rochoh achronoh.)

(The laws pertaining to raisin wine will be explained at the conclusion of Chapter 53.)

2. When wine is squeezed out of the grapes by treading on them or by other means besides a wine press, [we may assume that there is still a residue of wine in the peels and] seeds. Therefore, if water is poured over them, even when the resulting mixture is no larger in quantity than the amount of water one originally used - or is even less than the amount originally used - as long as it tastes like wine, borey pri hagofen is recited before we partake of it.

However, if the grapes were crushed in a wine press, and afterwards water was poured over them - alternatively, if water was poured over wine dregs - the resulting mixture is regarded as water.

3. When wine is mixed with water, [either in the process of making it or afterwards] if there is six times as much water as wine, the wine is considered to be insignificant and the mixture is regarded as nothing more than water. If the percentage of wine is greater, [then the ruling depends on the prevailing local custom]. If most people mix their wine to this degree and drink the mixture instead of wine, one should recite borey pri hagofen before partaking of it. If not, the individual's preference [for this mixture] is insignificant.

   The Blessings for Wine
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Halacha-Yomi, Copyright (c) 2000 ProjectGenesis, Inc.

 


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