The Secret Haitian History of America’s Favorite Kiddush Wine
Ah, Manischewitz Concord Grape, that most kosher of wines. The dark purple, sickly sweet Passover staple is not among Judaism’s proudest culinary contributions. It is perhaps fortunate, then, that the Haitians don’t know it’s ours.
Fritz Jean-Louis had his first glass of Manischewitz the night before his First Communion in the town of Cap-Haitien. Fritz’s wife Margaret first tasted the stuff on a separate Catholic occasion: a Good Friday dinner. “I never knew it was Jewish,” she said. For their daughter Maritza, a first-generation Haitian-American, Manischewitz is as Haitian as rice and beans, never mind the six-pointed star on the label….