Boiling the Religion out of Kosher

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FLEXIBLE FLUX™ – “I want some good stuff even with my bad stuff.”™

Trendy, exclusive pop-up restaurants, featuring special themes or nuances that exist for a limited time, are offering consumers unique dining experiences. With fun, memorable or luxurious environments and interesting choices, these establishments are helping patrons break out of their normal routine.
Innovative menus, tasty drinks and fresh aesthetics serve up new and attention-grabbing options. Yet today’s trendsetting restaurants provide more than just meals. They are establishing communities through the common ground of food—giving consumers a respite from the restaurant status quo. Of course, shaking off the ordinary is not always about forging new paths. Sometimes it involves rediscovering old ones. Consider the kosher food trend.

Two men, Tzvi Balbin and Yossi Spigler, decided to take a few restaurants and turn them kosher for just one night in Fitzroy, Australia—and Chasing Kosher was born. By changing a local restaurant, overnight, into a kosher eatery, Chasing Kosher provides a common place for consumers following the kosher diet. This makes it easier for people seeking kosher food to eat out while they travel and opens a wider variety of dining options—all at places kosher diners would normally have to skip. Under rabbinical supervision, the kitchens are equipped with the correct utensils, and a rabbi inspects all the food to ensure everything is kosher and follows specific religious guidelines.

Within 20 minutes of announcing the new concept, all the seats for the evening sold out. People paid $120 dollars for a five-course meal and $90 for a three-course meal that was completely kosher. With a limited availability of local restaurant options for kosher consumers, they are willing to shell out the big bucks for a fine-dining meal. After all, kosher consumers rarely have the luxury of choosing from a full restaurant menu.

It is interesting to note that not all people following kosher diets are religious—or even Jewish. In a rapidly changing world, people today are looking to earlier generations for inspiration on how to live. Consumers are interested in returning to age-old practices, such as eating farm-raised food that is not overly processed or laden with chemicals and preservatives. They are rediscovering old-fashioned food ethics, such as parameters to ensure meat butchering is humane and clean. Consumers seeking to follow in their ancestors’ footsteps are adopting old traditions as their own. As more consumers embark on the kosher diet, they are choosing to eat kosher while leaving out the spirituality. A nonreligious kosher regimen still offers a diet plan and lifestyle with specific principles and guidelines for eating healthy, humanely treated food.

SAFETY / FLEXIBLE FLUX

WHY IT MATTERS:

Food products and restaurants are labeling their products as kosher, just as we’re seeing labels like gluten free, cruelty free, organic, or sustainable appearing on our shelves. The appeal for kosher products is growing, and companies are beginning to realize that this is an easily adaptable area. It’s no longer about the religion; it’s about the purity of kosher foods—knowing what you’re putting into your body, following a particular set of standards and adhering to a structural diet lifestyle. The appeal is that kosher offers the consumer transparency, since they know it has to be held accountable to a higher set of standards in order to label the product as kosher. Going kosher, while boiling the religion out of it, is an emerging structural diet plan that has been around for centuries for the consumer whose stomachs are hungry for clean change.

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