Halacha Club

Kitzur Shulchan Aruch, Rabbi Shlomo Ganzfried

Chapter 43 : Laws Pertaining to the Berachos Over Special Courses During the Meal


Everything you eat during the meal to satisfy your hunger, for example: meat, fish, relishes, porridges, soups, pancakes etc., even if you eat them without bread, you do not have to recite a berachah before or after eating them; because since you are eating them to satisfy your hunger, they are considered part of the meal, and the whole meal is secondary to the bread which is the mainstay of life. Therefore, all such foods are exempt with the berachah of Hamotzi and the Birkas Hamazon. Even if food is sent to you from another house, you do not have to recite a [separate] berachah over it, because it is assumed that your intention [when reciting Hamotzi] was to include any food that is brought to you.


Similarly, you do not have to recite a separate berachah over beverages; because beverages are also considered part of the meal, since it is not usual to eat [a meal] without drinking. The exception to this rule is when you drink wine, because wine is something special. (For in many instances, we must recite a berachah over wine, even though we do not actually want to drink any, for example, when reciting Kiddush or Havdallah.) Therefore, you have to recite a berachah over it, even during the course of a meal. If you recited a berachah over the wine before washing your hands for the meal, and you intended to drink wine during the meal, or [even without special intention] if you are accustomed to drink wine during the meal, you do not have to repeat the berachah, for it is exempt with the berachah you said over the wine before the meal. Whiskey, which in our area [Central and Eastern Europe] is not usually consumed during a meal, is in question whether it is part of the meal or not. Therefore, if you intend drinking whiskey during the meal, drink a little before washing your hands, [that is] less than a kazayis, recite the berachah over it and have in mind to exempt that which you will drink during the meal. If you failed to do this, recite a berachah first on a bit of sugar and thus exempt the whiskey. There are those who resolve the problem by dipping some bread into the whiskey, but other authorities question this practice.