Storing Beer in Jugs that Had Been Gentile-Owned [AZ 33b]

A huge concern for the rabbis was the consumption of gentile wine, as it could be used in libations, which was a problematic issue for the rabbis. In a discussion of using jugs that gentiles had previously owned (beginning on the bottom of AZ 33a (starting with תנו רבנן: קנקנים של עובדי כוכבים)), while the […]

The Amoraic Prohibition Against Gentile Beer? [AZ 31b]

A curious text emerges on Avodah Zarah 31b: אתמר מפני מה אסרו שכר של גוים רמי בר חמא אמר רבי יצחק משום חתנות רב נחמן אמר משום גילוי It was stated: On account of what did they forbid gentiles’ beer? Rami, son of Hama said from Rabbi Yizhak’s name: “On account of [inter]marriage.” Rav Nahman […]

The Beginnings of the Post-Shulhan Arukh Debate Over the Ratio of Nullifying Libated Wine [YD 134:5]

A fascinating wine-related dispute breaks out over Rabbi Yosef Karo’s (1488-1575) statement (שו”ע יו”ד קל”ד:ה): מה יהא במים ויהא בהם כדי לבטל טעם היין ששה חלקים כנגדו וכל שיש במים כשיעור הזה מותר אפילו בשתייה How much of a ratio is there with water to cancel out the taste of [libated] wine? Six parts [of […]

Considering the Nullification of Wine: An Experiment [YD 134:5]

I recently came across a rather curious text in the Shulhan Arukh (YD 134:5): מה יהא במים ויהא בהם כדי לבטל טעם היין ששה חלקים כנגדו וכל שיש במים כשיעור הזה מותר אפילו בשתייה How much of a ratio of water cancels out the taste of wine? Six parts [of water] to one [part of wine]. […]

Blessing for Different Wine

While there is a well-known tannaitic teaching that one says a blessing – בורא פרי הגפן (Creator of the fruits of the vine) – over wine (mBerakhot 6:1), one of the interesting blessings that is created during the period of the amoraim is that over drinking different wine (bBerakhot 59b): אמר רב יוסף בר אבא […]

Purim Drinking II: Which Beverage(s) to Drink?

Having begun a discussion of drinking on Purim, (and what got me re-interested in this topic), I wanted to do an initial post on which beverage one should drink in order to intoxicate oneself on Purim.      Curiously, in neither Rabbi Jacob, son of Asher‘s Four Divisions1 nor in Rabbi Joseph Karo‘s Set Table2 is any specific beverage mentioned in order to intoxicate, […]

Bentsching Over A Cup

If one were to open the Shulhan Arukh on the topic of saying the ברכת המזון (grace after meals) with a cup (for instance, see Berakhos 51a), one would find that Rabbi Yosef Karo wrote the following (OH 182.1): יש שאומרים שברכת המזון טעונה כוס אפילו ביחיד, וצריך לחזור עליו, ולא יאכל אם אין לו כוס לברך עליו אם הוא מצפה […]

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