For the kosher wine industry, the run-up to Passover is what the run-up to New Year’s Eve is for the sparkling wine industry — a time of big sales and bigger hype. Not surprisingly, this is also the time of year the greatest number of new kosher wines tend to be released. Here are seven that you may wish to put on your shopping list.
Bonnet-Ponson, Brut Primer Cru, Champagne, Kosher Edition, Non-Vintage: Just a few years ago the kosher Champagne market had shrunk to only three wines, but as kosher French wine in general is making a comeback, so too is kosher Champagne, and this new (and delightful) addition raises the number of kosher Champagnes to seven. Made from a blend of 60 percent Pinot Noir and 40 percent Chardonnay, all grown organically on 45-year-old vines in the Bonnet family’s vineyards in the north of Champagne, this full-bodied dry sparkler has a dark straw color and a thick mousse of tiny bubbles. The bouquet is redolent of apricots, apples, lemons, mangos, cream, and hot croissants. Look for flavors of mango, apples and Meyer lemons at the front of the palate, moving towards a creamy, nutty middle, and notes of spice and freshly baked bread on the finish.
Score A/A- ($64.99. Available at Liquors Galore, 1212 Ave. J, Brooklyn,  338-4166. Half bottles are also available, for $33.99, directly from the importer, liquidkosher.com.)
Tabor, Zohar, Adama II, Galilee, 2014: The newest addition to Tabor’s popular Adama II series. This medium-bodied, youthful, straw-colored wine is made from a blend of 40 percent Sauvignon Blanc, 20 percent Chardonnay, 20 percent Roussanne and 20 percent French Colombard. Look for a grape-like nose with elements of pineapple, grapefruit, peach and honeysuckle. Peaches, fresh grapes and citrus dominate the flavor, with just a note of cream. Drink within the next two years.
Score B/B+ ($23.99. Available at Suhag Wines & Liquor, 69-30 Main St., Flushing, Queens,  793-6629.)
Dalton, Pinot Gris, Unoaked, Galilee, 2015: This crisp, refreshing, light-bodied, straw-colored white was made from Pinot Gris grapes grown at an altitude of 2,500 feet. The bouquet is mostly tropical, with elements of honeydew and tangerine. Look for flavors of honeydew, cantaloupe, lemons, and tropical citrus. Clean and well structured, with a nice level of acid, this wine would be a great choice for drinking on a hot spring (or summer) day. Drink within the next two years.
Score B+ (This new vintage should presently be making its way into New York stores.)
Lewis Pasco, The Pasco Project BDX, Judean Hills, 2014: This full-bodied, garnet-colored, Bordeaux-style cuvee of 56 percent Cabernet Sauvignon and 44 percent Merlot, was aged for nine months in French oak barrels. Look for cherries, cassis and toasty oak, with an herbal note, on the nose. The flavor is redolent of cherries, cassis, raspberries, and plums, on an earthy, woodsy background, with notes of uncured tobacco and chocolate towards the finish. Made in a somewhat more fruit-forward style than previous vintages, this wine, which is enjoyable now, should continue to develop over the next four years. Best 2017-2020.
Score B+ (27.99. Available online from kosherwine.com,  567-4370.)
Tulip, Espero, Galilee, 2013: Dark garnet colored, and full bodied, this rich, food-friendly wine is a blend of 55 percent Syrah, 30 percent Merlot and 15 percent Cabernet Franc. The nose has elements of cherries, red currants, cedar smoke and black pepper. Look for flavors of cherries, currants, strawberries and smoky oak, with notes of pepper, allspice, and espresso towards the back of the palate. Imbued with an abundance of powdery tannins, this wine is ready to drink now until the end of the decade.
Score B+ ($36.95. Available at Skyview Wine and Spirits, 5681 Riverdale Ave., Riverdale,  759-8466.)
Volcanus, Rioja, 2013: Made from 100 percent Tempranillo, this ruby-colored, medium-bodied Spanish red has flavors and aromas of cherries, raspberries and fennel, with a hint of smoked fish and a bit of a green element. Well balanced, with a good level of acid, this easy drinking wine would be a good choice to serve on a hot day. Drink within the next 18 months.
Score B ($10.39. Available at Westchester Wine Warehouse, 53 Tarrytown Road, White Plains, 824-1400.)
Villa Cape, Pinotage, Reserve, Western Cape, South Africa, 2015: Youthful and ruby colored, this medium-bodied wine has a green-tinged nose with notes of cherries, violets, and a bit of smoke. Look for flavors of cherries, raspberries, and red currants, with a note of violet on the finish, and a touch of Pinotage’s typical funk. Drink within the next two years.
Score B ($8.49. Available online from onlinekosherwine.com,  798-0787.)
Please Note that wines were scored on an ‘A’-‘F’ scale where ‘A’ is excellent, ‘B’ is good, ‘C’ is flawed, ‘D’ is very flawed, and ‘F’ is undrinkable. Prices listed reflect the price at the retailer mentioned.