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Beverages, Liquor and Wine
Beverages, Liquors and Wine


1. Does rice wine require certification?

2. Can you buy black coffee from a vending machine?

3. Do flavored seltzers require certification?

4. Do those brands of kosher grape juice which do not state mevushal, but only "pasteurized" on the label, have the halachic status of mevushal?

5. Can't someone tell if a product is kosher by looking at the ingredients?


1. Does rice wine require certification?

Based on our understanding of industry practice, rice wine (sake) does not require kosher certification. Nonetheless, a kosher certified sake would be your assurance that any issues, however minimal, have been resolved.

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2. Can you buy black coffee from a vending machine?

In a perfect world the machine would only vend black coffee and there would be no kosher concerns. In the real world however, things are not so simple. Most machines vend several types of coffee, tea, hot chocolate, and even soup. In the older machines where many items were served through the same nozzle it was fairly clear that you could not purchase coffee from such a machine. The modern machines however are computer controlled and are very advanced. One of the big improvements is that each item has its own tubes and serving nozzles. Unfortunately, though, unless you know that this particular type of machine has separate mechanisms throughout, you cannot be certain that the items are not mixing or being dispensed from the same nozzle as a non-kosher item. Therefore, it is not recommended that you purchase any beverage from a hot drink machine without intimate knowledge of how the machine operates.

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3. Do flavored seltzers require certification?

Flavored seltzers are very similar to soft drinks, less complicated but at times very deceptive. Sometimes a flavored seltzer will be a plain seltzer with flavor added. At times, the seltzers will not only be flavored it will be sweetened as well and will be more kindred to a soda than a seltzer in taste and complexity. In both instances the formulations need a certification.

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4. Do those brands of kosher grape juice which do not state mevushal, but only "pasteurized" on the label, have the halachic status of mevushal?

If the grape juice is pasteurized at least at 165 degrees Fahrenheit, then Star-K would accept it in our facilities as mevushal.

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5.Can't someone tell if a product is kosher by looking at the ingredients?

Not necessarily. For example, if the product says vinegar, it could be a non-kosher wine vinegar or kosher vinegar. Or,even if the ingredients are kosher, the item may be made on the same equipment used to process pork and beans, for example. There are, however, products where we are familiar with the processing and the ingredient panel is useful. Call our hotline at 410-484-4110 to determine the kosher status of specific products.

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