The Jew And The Carrot

Kosher Food Coming to Senate Cafeteria

By Nathan Guttman

  • Print
  • Share Share
istock photos

Some good news for hungry Jewish Capitol Hill staffers, lobbyists and politicos.

The Senate cafeteria will soon begin offering kosher food alongside its regular specialties (which include the famous ham-and-bean soup). As first reported this week in The Washington Post, the cafeteria has reached an agreement with a local kosher deli to provide pre-packed sandwiches and meals at the Senate.

“I am thrilled that the Senate cafeteria is providing kosher food for Senators, staff and visitors,” said William Daroff, who heads the Washington office of the Jewish Federations of North America and frequently visits Capitol Hill when lobbying for Jewish causes, “It is truly a much-needed accommodation to ensure that all Americans are able to break bread in our halls of power.”

Finding kosher food in Washington is not an easy task, and Capitol Hill is even more of a challenge. The nation’s capital has only a handful of kosher restaurant,s and the latest attempt to open a kosher food establishment adjacent to Congress collapsed with the fall from grace of its proprietor, convicted lobbyist Jack Abramoff.

At times, kosher events have been held in Congress, such as the reception hosted by the speaker of the House for Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu after his speech to Congress in May.

“We’ve been having kosher food on Capitol Hill for years, but not as readily available as this will be,” said Rabbi Levi Shemtov, Chabad’s Washington representative, who added that at last he will be able to actually have a meal on the Hill instead of making do with “a bottle of water and a bag of potato chips.”

So, who will enjoy the Senate’s kosher food?

Of the dozen Jewish senators, Joseph Lieberman of Connecticut, is the only one who is Orthodox and presumably keeps kosher.

Lieberman, however, is not seeking re-election and will be leaving the Senate in January 2012. But there are still many Capitol Hill workers who would like to replace their lunchboxes with a kosher meal at the cafeteria. One of them, a young Senate committee staffer, was the one who came up with the idea to make the connection between the chamber’s cafeteria and a kosher caterer, which eventually led to this new initiative.


Permalink | | Share | Email | Print | Filed under: william daroff, senate, rabbi levi shemtov, kosher, capitol hill, cafeteria

The Jewish Daily Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Jewish Daily Forwardrequires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and The Jewish Daily Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.




Find us on Facebook!
  • This is what the rockets over Israel and Gaza look like from space:
  • "Israel should not let captives languish or corpses rot. It should do everything in its power to recover people and bodies. Jewish law places a premium on pidyon shvuyim, “the redemption of captives,” and proper burial. But not when the price will lead to more death and more kidnappings." Do you agree?
  • Slate.com's Allison Benedikt wrote that Taglit-Birthright Israel is partly to blame for the death of American IDF volunteer Max Steinberg. This is why she's wrong:
  • Israeli soldiers want you to buy them socks. And snacks. And backpacks. And underwear. And pizza. So claim dozens of fundraising campaigns launched by American Jewish and Israeli charities since the start of the current wave of crisis and conflict in Israel and Gaza.
  • The sign reads: “Dogs are allowed in this establishment but Zionists are not under any circumstances.”
  • Is Twitter Israel's new worst enemy?
  • More than 50 former Israeli soldiers have refused to serve in the current ground operation in #Gaza.
  • "My wife and I are both half-Jewish. Both of us very much felt and feel American first and Jewish second. We are currently debating whether we should send our daughter to a Jewish pre-K and kindergarten program or to a public one. Pros? Give her a Jewish community and identity that she could build on throughout her life. Cons? Costs a lot of money; She will enter school with the idea that being Jewish makes her different somehow instead of something that you do after or in addition to regular school. Maybe a Shabbat sing-along would be enough?"
  • Undeterred by the conflict, 24 Jews participated in the first ever Jewish National Fund— JDate singles trip to Israel. Translation: Jews age 30 to 45 travelled to Israel to get it on in the sun, with a side of hummus.
  • "It pains and shocks me to say this, but here goes: My father was right all along. He always told me, as I spouted liberal talking points at the Shabbos table and challenged his hawkish views on Israel and the Palestinians to his unending chagrin, that I would one day change my tune." Have you had a similar experience?
  • "'What’s this, mommy?' she asked, while pulling at the purple sleeve to unwrap this mysterious little gift mom keeps hidden in the inside pocket of her bag. Oh boy, how do I answer?"
  • "I fear that we are witnessing the end of politics in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. I see no possibility for resolution right now. I look into the future and see only a void." What do you think?
  • Not a gazillionaire? Take the "poor door."
  • "We will do what we must to protect our people. We have that right. We are not less deserving of life and quiet than anyone else. No more apologies."
  • "Woody Allen should have quit while he was ahead." Ezra Glinter's review of "Magic in the Moonlight": http://jd.fo/f4Q1Q
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.