Two Days, 53 People, 7 Bottles, 5 Cases of Elements Sherry

These are some of the numbers from the ‘Milk & Honey Evening’ I hosted at both the Bergen Club and the Hoboken Club here in New Jersey. Originally, Doc Ishai Kleiman was supposed to join us, but due to various unforeseen events, we had to postpone. It was quite fitting to hold an Israeli-themed event and feel a sense of belonging and togetherness.

The preparation for the event was just as enjoyable as the event itself. Spending two hours on Zoom with Tomer Goren, learning about the distillery, its history, its story, and its bottles was a gift in itself.

Here are the bottles we tasted:

Classic Representing the distillery’s profile with a noticeable sweetness at 46%. It consists of 75% ex-bourbon and 25% STR casks. Learning about Jim Swan and the STR process was fascinating. For those interested, there’s an episode on Omer’s podcast that delves deeply into this.

Elements Red Wine A crowd favorite at 46% but less punchy and less alcoholic than the Classic. It’s 50% from the Classic and 50% distillery spirit aged in old wine casks. The sweetness from the wine is definitely present. Interestingly, about 20% of participants in both clubs detected smoke in this glass, a phenomenon I found surprising since I didn’t notice it myself.

Dead Sea Part of the Apex series, this bottle tells the intriguing story of aging in hot climates like the Dead Sea and in five different climate zones across Israel. The story of casks aging on the roof of Herod’s and evaporating rapidly, leaving a liquid that left mouths agape and eyes tearing up, was captivating. The saltiness and sweetness blend beautifully. It’s a crowd favorite, ranking second.

Special Cognac Edition for the U.S. At 56.2%, this is a sweet delight. Just the way I love it—a serious candy. Mikki Kilshtein, I thought of you immediately when I first tasted it.

Peated One of the best! Also from the Elements series at 46%, it combines 50% from the Classic and 50% distillery spirit aged in a mix of smoked and non-smoked casks. The smoke here is so good and subtle, appealing to both heavy smoke lovers and newcomers to smoky flavors. A very successful bottle.

Pomegranate At 56.8%, aged in unique pomegranate wine casks exclusive to Milk & Honey. Even compared to the Cognac, it was super sweet. Those who loved it were fans of port and fortified wines. We have another version of this pomegranate wine cask as a single cask with 66.6% that we bought from Josh Mn, which definitely suits the American taste for sweetness.

Local Barley Wow—what is this??? First of all, people went crazy for it. About 80% of the crowd would buy it if they could. Made from barley enhanced in Israel, it had a light, sweet, and grassy elegance. Tomer, you have to bring more of this here; people are longing for the taste and want more.

It was a very emotional event. We look forward to seeing Gil 🙂 and Tomer presenting Israeli products here 🇮🇱🕎🥃🫶.

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