Friday, February 23, 2018

NBA All-Star Amar’e Stoudemire has launched a line of kosher-for-Passover Israeli wines.

Photo: Courtesy of Jewish national Fund
NEW YORK (JTA) — Six-time NBA All-Star Amar’e Stoudemire has launched a line of kosher-for-Passover Israeli wines. The 6-foot-10 former player, who returned earlier this month from a trip to the Jewish state, spoke glowingly about the wines and his connection to Israel at a news conference here Tuesday. “It’s a blessing for me and my family to be able to produce such great wines from a land like the land of Israel, so we’re constantly counting our blessings for that,” Stoudemire told reporters at the Jewish National Fund House on the Upper East Side. Stoudemire, 35, said he had been in talks with the Israel Wine Producers Association for three years about making an Israeli wine and realized the opportunity when he relocated to the country in 2016 to play for the Israeli team Hapoel Jerusalem. He retired from basketball last year after helping lead Hapoel Jerusalem to the Israeli Basketball League Cup. “Once I moved to Israel, it was the perfect connection to meet with the vineyards and go to the tastings and figure out the different blends for each bottle,” said Stoudemire,
a part-owner of Hapoel Jerusalem. Stoudemire played for the New York Knicks and Phoenix Suns among other teams in a 16-year NBA career. Although raised Christian, he began exploring a spiritual connection to Judaism on a trip to Israel in 2010. “I feel spiritually Jewish, culturally Jewish,” he said at the time. Stoudemire’s line includes two red wine blends and one Cabernet Sauvignon, all produced in limited quantity by the Tulip Winery on its vineyards in Kfar Tikva, in Israel’s north. The winery produced only 100 bottles of the high-end wine, Stoudemire Private Collection, with each bottle retailing at $244.99. It produced slightly larger quantities, 1,680 each, of the Stoudemire Reserve and Stoudemire Grand Reserve wines, which are retailing for $59.99 and $99.99, respectively. The kosher beverage giant Royal Wine Corp. is distributing the wines, which are currently only available for purchase in stores in New York and New Jersey.  Read More at the JTA.


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