Grape Juice and Wine

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Beracha

  1. The Bracha on wine is HaGefen. [1]
  2. The Bracha on grape juice is HaGefen. However, pasteurized grape juice made from grape juice is Shehakol and unfit for kiddush.[2]
  3. Grape juice from concentrate according to some poskim is hagefen[3], while according to most other poskim the bracha is shehakol.[4]
  4. Diluted grape juice even with a little water according to some poskim is shehakol[5], while according to others is hagefen as long as the taste is still like regular grape juice excluding any added sugars or flavors.[6]
  5. Diluted wine is hagefen according to Ashkenazim as long as it still has 16% of pure wine.[7] However, Sephardim hold that the bracha is shehakol unless there is a majority of undiluted wine.[8]

Mevushal (Cooked Wine)

  1. There is a debate among the poskim whether pasteurized wine has the status of cooked wine in Halacha with respect to Magah Akum.[9]
  2. The bracha on cooked wine or pasturized wine is Hagefen.[10]

Bracha Achrona

  1. A person who drinks a reviyit of wine afterwards has to recite a bracha achrona of Al Hagefen. Because there is a dispute whether the bracha achrona is recited for a kezayit or a reviyit a person should endeavor to only have less than a kezayit and not recite a bracha achrona or more than a reviyit and recite a bracha achrona. If a person did have in between a kezayit and a reviyit one shouldn't recite a bracha achrona.[11]

Sources

  1. Mishna Brachot 35a, Shulchan Aruch 202:1, Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 49:1
  2. Rav Shlomo Zalman Auerbach in Minchat Shlomo 1:4 explains that really wine is only hagefen if it can be intoxicating as we see by the laws of Nesachim (and is understood from the pasuk Bamidbar 28:7). However, grape juice that was pasteurized and can't be intoxicating is nonetheless hagefen since the cooking is considered a positive change that leaves it as edible and not something that would remove its bracha. However, once the pasteurized grape juice is diluted it can't be hagefen since that’s not wine. The idea that diluted wine is still hagefen (Rama 204:5) only applies to wine which is intoxicating. He explains that the same should be true for kiddush that diluted pasteurized grape juice is unfit since it was changed by cooking and the dilution can’t grant it the status of reconstituted wine since diluting doesn’t make it as good as pure juice. Halichot Shlomo v. 2 p. 218 9:12 writes that Rav Shlomo Zalman had a doubt whether grape juice from concentrate is shehakol.
  3. The Laws of Brachos p. 316 concludes that one should recite hagefen on reconstituted grape juice but shouldn’t use it for kiddush.
  4. Minchat Shlomo 1:4 concludes that diluted grape juice is shehakol. Or Letzion 2:20:21 writes that grape juice from concentrate is shehakol since once it is turned into a syrup it is no longer hagefen. Vezot Habracha p. 393 concludes that grape juice from concentrate or reconstituted is shehakol. He cites the Minchat Shlomo. The Halachos of Brachos p. 445 seems to agree.
  5. Minchat Shlomo 1:4. Vezot Habracha c. 12 p. 116 quotes that Rav Elyashiv agreed and explained that adding even a little water can make it shehakol. However, adding a few drops doesn't change the bracha.
  6. Or Letzion 2:20:18 writes that grape juice is like wine for dilution and is still hagefen as the taste didn't change without the aid of any added sugars or flavors.
  7. Rama 204:5
  8. Shulchan Aruch 204:5, Kaf Hachaim 204:33 based on Pri Megadim E"A 16
  9. Rav Moshe Feinstein (Sh"t Iggerot Moshe YD 2:52) held that pasteurized wine is considered cooked and therefore is permitted even if it was touched by a non-Jew or a Jew who publicly desecrates Shabbos. However, according to Rav Elyashiv (Kovetz Teshuvos 1:pg. 112) and Rav Shlomo Zalman Auerbach (Minchas Shlomo 25) pasteurized wine is not considered cooked in halacha in regards to being touched by a non-Jew. Chacham Ovadia Yosef (Sh"t Yabia Omer YD 8:15) writes that if necessary one can rely on the opinion of Rav Moshe Feinstein.
  10. Shulchan Aruch 272:8, Yachava Daat 2:35
  11. Shulchan Aruch 210:1. There are three opinions in the rishonim about the amount of wine necessary to recite a brach achrona. The Rambam (Brachot 3:12) holds that a person doesn't recite a bracha achrona on drinks unless one drank a reviyit. Tosfot Sukkah 26b s.v. vlo holds that one has to recite a bracha achrona for drinks even if one just drank a kezayit. They even entertain the possibility that there's no bracha achrona unless one drinks a Kebeytzah. Tosfot Brachot 39a s.v. besar holds that if one drank a cheekful (melo lugmav) one should recite a bracha achrona. Rosh Brachot 7:24 concludes to avoid any doubt a person should either drink less than a kezayit or more than a reviyit. Shulchan Aruch 210:1 agrees.