Kosher Restaurants at NYC Restaurant Week 2013

Last updated: July 17, 2013

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nyc-restaurant-week-2013-kosherIt should come as no surprise, but once again, there are no kosher restaurants participating in the NYC Restaurant Week (3 weeks really) sponsored by American Express, starting July 22nd ending August 16th.


last wrote about this last summer, and nothing has changed.


Here’s my theory:

Restaurant Week requires restaurants to offer 3-course prix fixe meals for $25 lunches and $38 dinners. While these prices mean that non-kosher fancy restaurants will likely not make much of a profit during this time period, they will be able to give diners a fancy experience at a reasonable cost. For kosher restaurants, since the overhead of kosher food and certification is higher, margins are lower, and for them to offer prices this low for a 3 course meal, they will undoubtedly take a loss.

Can you imagine getting a 3 course dinner at Le Marais, Prime Grill, J Soho, Abigael’s, Mike’s Bistro, etc. for $38 per person? Of course not! They would be taking heavy losses.

Hence why no kosher restaurant could ever participate given these terms.


What do you think is the reason behind the lack of kosher restaurants participating in Restaurant Week? Comment below. Would love to hear other theories.


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  • I was hugely disappointed as well.

  • There has to be room to make this work. Anyone playing the “they won’t let me” or “they won’t work with us” card simply sucks at pitching the concept!

  • LilMissCakes

    I think some restaurants could make it work, but the portions would have to be small and people might be disappointed.

  • Sarah Klinkowitz

    A tasting menu, a set of amuse bouche with a drink -SOMETHING! It is beyond time for the kosher kids to play ball!

  • let’s all start a kosher restaurant week!!

  • it stinks :( those restaurant week menus are all awesome and we can’t even participate. it’s a shame to be left out.

  • Elan Kornblum

    I keep forgetting to talk to the restaurants about this or at least I find out too late to do anything about it each year. I’ll ask them why the don’t participate. I wonder if they’ve said no, or just never been approached. And your theory of the upscale places might ring true but not for the mid level places, which tells me they haven’t been approached or haven’t been properly sold on it. Let’s do something about this for next year but early on.

  • Karen Edit

    So why don’t they make a kosher restaurant week and raise the prices?

    • from their perspective, why bother?

      • Karen Edit

        If the price is higher, so they don’t lose money, they could bother for the same reasons the non-kosher restaurants do it. Maybe people who hadn’t eaten there before would go for the 3 course prix fixe meal, realize the food is amazing and go back often. Really, I want them to do it so I can write about it. I work for a Jewish magazine and always want to include restaurant week, but there are no kosher restaurants to write about.

        • there are multiple factors at stake: either the restaurants aren’t approached (likely) and/or the restaurants would need to take a loss. The point is that they conform to a specific price point, which most kosher restaurant cannot do with all the extra overhead.

        • Right, but it’s not the right business decision for them. Unfortunately for us.