- Written by MFA
The Chanukah festival 2019
The festival commemorates both the 164 BCE rededication of the Second Temple in Jerusalem after its desecration by the ruling Seleucid Kingdom and the re-establishment of religious freedom for the Jewish people after a period of harsh repression.
Chanukah ("dedication" in Hebrew) is celebrated this year from sunset on Sunday, 22nd December until sunset on Monday, 30 December. The festival commemorates both the 164 BCE rededication of the Second Temple in Jerusalem after its desecration by the ruling Seleucid (Syrian Greek) Kingdom, under Antiochus IV – and the re-establishment of religious freedom for the Jewish people after a period of harsh repression. The success of the popular revolt led by Judah Maccabee and his brothers has, ever since, symbolized the Jewish people's fight for, and achievement of, its liberty and freedom as a nation against overwhelming odds. Chanukah is not a legal holiday in Israel; offices, shops and public transportation will operate as usual; schools, however, will be closed.
Historical background to Chanukah
In 200 BCE, the Seleucid King, Antiochus III, conquered the Land of Israel and incorporated it into his kingdom. While neither he, nor his son and successor, Seleucus IV, forced their Hellenistic culture on the Jews, his second son, Antiochus IV, who acceded to the throne in 175 BCE, instituted – with the active acceptance and support of many Jews – a policy of forced Hellenization and enacted harsh policies against those Jews who refused to adopt Hellenistic culture. Under Antiochus IV, Jews were forced to eat pork, and Sabbath observance and circumcision were made punishable by death. In 167 BCE, the Temple was defiled and dedicated to the Greek god Zeus, and became the center of an idol-worshipping cult.
In 165 BCE, a popular revolt – led by Mattathias, an elderly priest from the town of Modi'in (east of Lod), and his five sons – broke out against Seleucid rule. Mattathias died soon thereafter, and was succeeded by his third son, Judah, also known as Judah Maccabee. Following a brilliant guerrilla campaign – as well as several victories over far larger, regular Seleucid armies – Judah's forces liberated Jerusalem in the winter of 164 BCE. The Temple was cleansed and, on the 25th of the Hebrew month of Kislev, rededicated.
At that time, according to rabbinic tradition, when Judah's men sought to relight the Temple menorah, or candelabra, only one day's worth of pure, undefiled olive oil was found, but the limited quantity of oil miraculously burned for the eight days required for new oil to be pressed. Thus, the holiday of Chanukah commemorates both the liberation of Jerusalem and the rededication of the Temple, and the miracle of the oil. In one of the blessings (see below) recited each night, the Jewish people praise God "who performed miracles for our ancestors in those days at this season."
Observance of Chanukah
In addition, children are given four-sided tops as toys. In the Diaspora, the sides bear the Hebrew letters that form the acronym: "A great miracle happened there." In Israel, the sides bear the Hebrew letters that form the acronym: "A great miracle happened here." In the State of Israel, Chanukah is marked by a torch relay from Modi'in to Jerusalem and giant menorahs are also lit in public squares.
- Written by Talma Gotteiner
The largest kosher wine exhibition in Israel, 'Kosher Food and Wine Exhibition (KFWE)' hosted 40 Israeli and international wineries and included 180 types of kosher wines in the annual exhibition.
The event was produced by 'Zur World of Wine' and was held this week at the 'Trask' event hall at the port of Tel-Aviv in light of the upcoming Purim and Passover holidays.
Among the participating wineries from Israel were Shiloh, Psagot and Jezreel Valley.
Among the wines launched by Israeli wineries were:
Shiloh Shor Merlot,
As explained by one of the owners, Shlomi Zur, the "Taste of the World" is the Israeli counterpart of the Kosher Food & Wine Experience (KFWE) in six cities around the world (Los Angeles, New York, Paris, London, Tel Aviv, and Miami). It is considered to be the most comprehensive and distinguished kosher wine and kosher food event in the world and has been growing annually.
Among the participating wineries from the international sector were:
Herzog California; Hagafen California USA ; ELVI Spain; Chateau Lascombe - France; Chateau Leoville Poyferre - France; Drappier – France ; Les Marronniers France; Barons Edmond & Benjamin De Rothschild France; Tsafona - Canada; Goose Bay New Zealand; Ramon Balboa Spain; Koenig - France; Chateau Malartic Lagraviere - France ; Chateau Giscours - France; Bartenura - Italy;
Shlomi Zur also mentioned that this year 'Zur World of Wine' was delighted to see more and more wineries from abroad taking part in the production of a kosher wine line. This year some of the newcomers at the exhibition were French winemakers and wineries who believe in kosher wine and in Israel.
Among the new wines launched at the event were:
Herzog Lineage Cabernet Sauvignon
Herzog Lineage Pinot noir
Herzog Lineage Choreograph
Tzafona Icewine Cabernet
Champagne Baron De Rothschild Rose ( photo)
Domanie Ternynck Pinot noir
Domanie Ternynck Chardonnay
Chateau Piada Sauternes
Chateau Mayne Guyon
Chateau Montiviel Pomerol
Ramon Cardova Albarino
The event in Tel Aviv was accompanied by dishes from local kosher restaurants such as 'The Meat & Wine Co.' (Herzliya), 'Skyline' (Jerusalem) and 'Resto' (Tel Aviv).
To read more about 'Zur World of Wine' refers to the full article at:
Photos by Silvia G Golan
Youtube Stella Szpira
- Written by Silvia
Socca Market in Tel Aviv has brought a new concept in dining to its unique venue for weddings, parties and major events. Instead of the standard fixed menu and waiter service, guests are invited to make the rounds of food stalls, each one featuring cuisine from different corners of the globe.
Drawing its inspiration from London’s Borough Market, New York’s Chelsea Market and Barcelona’s La Boqueria -- and more recently, Tel Aviv’s Sarona Market and Shuk Tzafon -- Socca Market comprises stalls that serve food representing the following cuisines:
Israeli (Mediterranean) - hummus, tehina, lamb kabab, skewers of shishlik and sabih
Italian - pastas, focaccias, antipasti (grilled vegetables) and bruschettas
Greek - souvlaki, dolmades (stuffed grape leaves) Greek salad, gyros, fried red mullet
Asian - dim sum dumplings, stir-fried noodles, bao sandwiches, Asian cabbage salad
American - fresh grilled hamburgers from prime beef, coleslaw, French fries
A delicious spread of desserts is served, featuring brownies with hot fudge sauce, chocolate chip cookies, hot apple crumble with pareve vanilla ice cream, meringues with berry sauce, lemon meringue tarts, and assorted pastries.
There is a full bar serving cocktails, sangria, and soft drinks, and a separate bar for wines.
Socca Market, which is certified kosher, is located in a trendy district of lofts and studios in south Tel Aviv.
Address: 27 Shocken Sreet (entrance from Shvil Hameretz)
Tel. (073) 248-0313
- Written by Silvia G Golan
3rd Annual Bridge the Food Gap at Leket Israel Welcomes the British Ambassador
--Leket Israel Third Annual British Volunteering Event – Bridge the Food Gap Welcomes Special Guests British Ambassador David Quarrey and Military Attaché Colonel Westerman --
Thursday, August 9, 2018: Leket Israel hosted its third annual Bridge the Food Gap event at its Logistics Center in Ra’anana for tourists and ex-pats from the UK. Over 100 volunteers turned up for the two hour event where they had the opportunity to sort and pack fresh rescued produce to be distributed to needy Israelis. In addition, Leket Israel was pleased to host members of the British Embassy in Israel, including Her Britannic Majesty's Ambassador to the State of Israel, David Quarrey and UK Military Attaché Colonel Westerman. In addition to the Ambassador and Colonel Westerman, 20 representatives from the embassy rolled up their sleeves to volunteer as well.
Guests were greeted by Gidi Kroch, CEO of Leket Israel, who welcomed the UK visitors to Leket and thanked them for volunteering. “We know that many of you are in Israel on holiday and it takes a special type of person to spend some of that time giving back to those in need” said Kroch. “Hunger doesn’t take a vacation and neither do the hardworking volunteers of Leket Israel.”
Kroch then introduced British Ambassador David Quarrey and thanked him for coming. “We are honored to welcome our friend and partner Ambassador Quarrey to volunteer at Leket. Your support and cooperation goes a long way in rescuing fresh nutritious food. We appreciate you coming and getting your hands dirty and we hope that other representatives will follow your lead.”
The Ambassador then thanked everyone for coming and Leket Israel for inviting him. “Thank you Leket for inviting me and the British Embassy staff to experience the important work that you do. It has been a privilege to make a small contribution and to see the impact that Leket has on so many people and communities across Israel. It was also another reminder of the huge contribution that British olim and visitors make to local communities here.”
Many of the volunteers were British citizens who moved to Israel and live in nearby cities. “No matter how long you’ve been in Israel you still always have that connection to your home country” says Zara Provisor, UK Development Coordinator at Leket Israel. “It’s nice to have an opportunity to get together with other Brits and do something good.”
Altogether the volunteers sorted and packed 5 tons of beets, peppers, cabbages, and onions which will go to feed 1000 needy Israeli families.
About Leket Israel: Serving as the country's National Food Bank and largest food rescue network, Leket Israel (www.leket.org/en) works to alleviate the problem of nutritional insecurity among Israel's poor. With the help of over 46,000 annual volunteers, Leket Israel rescues and delivers more than 2.3 million hot meals, 31.8 million lbs. of produce and perishable goods to underprivileged children, families and the elderly. This food, that would have otherwise gone to waste, is redistributed to Leket’s 200 nonprofit partner organizations caring for the needy, reaching 175,000+ people weekly.
Facebook לקט ישראל Leket Israel
Photos by Silvia G. Golan
- Written by Buzzy Gordon
The Cafe Rothschild chain has opened in newest restaurant in the suburb of Givatayim, a block away from the municipal border with Tel Aviv. The kosher chain, which serves dairy but no meat dishes, has been expanding rapidly into the center of the country from its base in the North.
Cafe Rothschild, whose slogan is b’n’divut -- meaning, “generously” -- is known for its freebies, large portions and value. Guests are greeted with a complimentary drink on arrival, and free popcorn is distributed in the evenings. Instead of the conventional happy hour, beer (part of an alcohol menu that includes spirits and wine) is always two-for-one.
The categories of the bilingual menu comprise breakfast, salads, pastas, appetizers, sandwiches, tortillas, pizzas, focaccias and fish dishes. In addition to the usual hot and cold beverages, there are fresh-squeezed juices, smoothies and shakes. Vegan and gluten-free options are also available.
Desserts appear on a Hebrew-only menu, but can be explained in English by the staff. The super-sized sweets are prepared by pastry chefs off-site.
Among the special offerings of Cafe Rothschild are Italian Tuesdays -- when pasta is NIS 29 and glasses of wine NIS 10 -- and Greek Fridays, featuring mezze.
Photos Silvia Golan