The Jew And The Carrot

Mike Tyson May Open Kosher Vegan Restaurants

By Michael Kaminer

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A few months after he called meat “poison” in a widely publicized Details magazine interview, Mike Tyson may put his money where his mouth is with a chain of vegan – and possibly kosher – eateries. The New York Post reports the retired, facially tattooed boxing champ is in talks with Moshe Malamud of collectible-coin hawkers The Franklin Mint to launch a high-end restaurant chain.

”The two talked shop at Malamud’s favorite kosher eatery, Solo, on Madison Avenue, where Tyson dined with his pregnant wife, Lakiha Spicer, on mushroom soup and mixed vegetables,” the Post reported. Solo, arguably one of New York’s trendiest kosher restaurants, has hosted famous guest chefs like former Top Chef-testant Eli Kirshtein.

A representative for Solo reported that the two discussed kosher and vegan dining concepts, along with potential names, “but that nothing was finalized.” The Boston Herald cheekily asked “was ear on the menu?”

While reports on Tyson’s would-be kosher venture on news, sports, and foodie sites alike have been using “kosher” and “vegan” almost interchangeably, the latter doesn’t automatically mean the former – at least according to Chabad. “A vegan restaurant would not have a hard time getting kosher certification. However, as long as there is no such certification one should not eat there,” a posting on Chabad.org says. “It is possible for a minute quantity of animal products to be included in a vegan-certified food.”

Malamud, meanwhile, doesn’t seem to share Tyson’s herbivorous predilections; in a 2008 NYMag.com profile of then-Solo chef and “Top Chef” season 3 winner Hung Huynh, Malamud waxed rhapsodic over the restaurant’s gefilte fish.


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