Manischewitz Smash Gin Cocktail

Manischewitz Smash

  1. Yield: 1 cocktail

Ah, Manischewitz, The classic, sweet Jewish wine at the butt of so many jokes about Jews.

I am not really a fan of drinking it by itself, except of course for that time I drank it straight from the bottle with a straw. But otherwise. I think it makes a good base for sangria in a pinch. And I like to use it in my Tuscan-style chopped liver. But straight up in a glass? Probably not.

But recently I was asked to teach a cocktails-making session at Limmud, a conference dedicated to Jewish learning “without limts.” I wanted to bring some uniquely Jewish flavors to cocktails, and so I immediately began to think of how I could include Manischewitz as part of the fun.

Manischewitz-collage-stampWhile it may sound from the ingredients that this is a very sweet cocktail, its actually quite subtle. You can add more or less syrup according to your tastes so try it a few ways until you find the right balance for your taste buds.


3 Tbsp Manischewitz syrup (see directions below)

2 tsp lemon juice

3 oz (1 ½ shots) good-quality gin such as Hendricks or Bombay Saphire

Cava or prosecco sparkling wine


lemon slice for garnish

Special equipment: Cocktail shaker


To make the Manischewitz Syrup:

Place 2 cups of Manischewitz wine in a saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil and then continue to reduce 15-20 minutes until it is thick, syrupy and about half its original size. Allow to cool and place in fridge for one hour.

To assembly the drink:

Place about 1 cup ice in a cocktail shaker. Add Manischewitz syrup, gin and fresh lemon juice.

Shake vigorously up and down until white and frothy on top.

Strain into serving glass. Top with approximately 1/2 cup prosecco or cava. Garnish with fresh lemon slice.

Posted on March 6, 2014

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