My Special Rosh Hashanah Gift to You

It’s that time of the year, my friends. No, it’s not just that time when the Days of Awe and the High Holidays of Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur are upon us. It is also the time when someone inevitably busts out a bottle of migraine-generatingly sweet Manischewitz wine to celebrate the yom tov.  Whether it is because no other kosher wine is available for the occasion, a yet-uninitiated guest brings it as a gift, or we just have a slightly masochistic flair for tradition, Manischewitz always seems to find its way to the Rosh Hashanah dinner table. And not only that, because hardly anyone is eager to down one full glass of the wine, let alone multiple, there is usually plenty left to spare after the holidays pass.     

So, what to do, what to do? Well, I have a solution for you and I call it the Mani-spritzer. 

The Mani-spritzer was conceived earlier this year after the bris of Jason’s best friend Matt’s son. We were hanging out at their home on the porch with a bunch of family in the afternoon after the bris, just sipping wine, munching on snacks, and having good conversation. I was looking at the wine options in the kitchen when I saw the mostly unused bottle of Manischewitz left over from the ceremony sitting on the counter. “Oh God, that’s sure never going to get used,” I thought to myself. But then an idea came to me – what if I could do something to the wine to make it less terrible?

I thought for a minute about why the wine was generally disliked – it was syrupy sweet. Then why not just dilute it?

Bingo.

I found some seltzer and mixed the two. Not bad! I went along my merry way, back out to rejoin the group, and didn’t think about it again until Matt’s wife Caryn’s mother asked me if I wanted a wine refill. After a bit of discussion with the group I said yes, but then she asked, “What wine were you drinking?”

I probably made a sort of half-embarrassed, half-deer-in-the-headlights face. “Uh, well… um, I kind of made like a Manischewitz seltzer mix to help get rid of the wine, but make it not taste so horrible.” Everyone, to my shock, laughed but immediately noted that was a smart idea. Caryn’s mother then commented it was like a spritzer, and would probably be good with some lime as well. Before I knew it, she had made this small addition and multiple people were enjoying the drink. The Mani-spritzer was born.

You can probably put 2 and 2 together here to figure out how to make a Mani-spritzer, but below is the recipe just in case:

– Equal parts Manischewitz and seltzer (seltzer can be plain, or flavored, such as raspberry or lemon-lime – also can be made at home with your Soda Stream if you have one)

– A squeeze of lime juice

While the Mani-spritzer has not, by any stretch, become my go-to drink, it’s a nice way to use rather than trash the Manischewitz that will inevitably appear on your Rosh Hashanah dinner table this year. I hope this little drink hack helps make your new year just a little sweeter.

Also, as we enter the new year, I want to thank everyone who has taken a minute out of their day this past year to read this post and any prior posts I’ve had on the blog, or has commented on an accompanying Facebook or Instagram post. It means a lot to me that you have been interested in what I post here, be it serious, quirky, or jovial. I am thankful for every single one of you! I hope to continue posting content throughout the upcoming year of 5778 that will put a smile on your face, inspire you, get you thinking deeper about a subject, and keep you coming back for more. 

Wishing all who celebrate these upcoming holidays a sweet, happy, healthy, and prosperous year ahead! Shana tova and l’chaim!

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