Ask Midtown Lunch: Passover Eats (and closings)

Occasionally I’ll get questions that I can’t answer alone. When I do, I post them for the Midtown Lunch readers to weigh in. Got your own question? Email it to


I’m sure like me, you may already be struggling with Passover. Such a nice holiday, such a non-foodie holiday. Got any suggestions for where to eat well this week?”


Uh… yes.  Er… struggling.  Sorry to let you down Matt, but my first night of Passover was spent at Kefi, where I’m pretty sure I consumed bread with every single course of the meal (their pita bread is delicious).  Now before you think I’m a total heathen, I did celebrate the 2nd night of Passover with my family… at a Chinese food restaurant.  It’s shameful, and I’m pretty sure I’m the worst Jew of all time. 

For those who don’t know, Pesach began this weekend (see how I did that, using the Hebrew term in a weak attempt at redemption?), starting an 8 day period where Jews abstain from eating any kind of bread to commemorate their Exodus from Egypt.  The story goes that the people were in such a rush, when God freed them from slavery, that they didn’t allow time for their bread to rise (hence, we don’t eat bread, or anything with yeast in it, or anything that “rises”???).  If you want to stay strictly Kashrut (Kosher for Passover) for lunch this week, you’re in pretty big trouble, because bread is the least of the things you can’t eat.  According to this site, you can’t eat anything with soy, corn, beans of any kind, or rice (which I never understood, but whatever).  And to top it off, most of the Kosher restaurants in Midtown are closed, since it would be too expensive to rid themselves of all of these products for the entire week.  (This includes the Diamond Dairy, Kosher Deluxe, Moshe’s Falafel Cart, and even the 2nd Ave. Deli, which I don’t even think is officially Kosher.)

Kosher-NY has a list of a few Kosher places that are still open this week, including Dougie’s BBQ on 47th btw. 5+6th, in the same building as El Rincon del Sabor.  For those who don’t need to be “crazy” Kosher, non-Kosher Jewish delis, like Sarge’s on the East, and the Cafe Edison on the West, are still open (despite the 2nd Ave. Deli anomaly), and both have matzah brie (fried matzah) and matzah ball soup.  The Edison will also be serving matzah meal pancakes at breakfast and lunchtime all week long.

Anybody got another suggestion for Matt (besides peanut butter and jelly on Matzah)?  Feel free to post in the comments below…


  • For the most part I’ve been sticking with meats, salads, and french fries.

    I certainly don’t follow the strictest rules as in years past I’ve always had rice, beans, corn without much hesitation…I’ve always believed that cutting out bread/pizza/pasta (which comprises about 75% of my diet) for 8 days was enough to really make me reflect on the history and meaning of the holiday. Speaking of which…why does no pizzeria make an attempt at matzah pizza?

  • Cause matzoh pizza is best at home, straight from the toaster oven (and even better with pepperoni on it)…

    Not to mention, there is truck loads of flour all over pizzerias and i’m guessing if you are going to go as far as eating matzoh pizza, you aren’t goign to be cool with all the flour it’ll pick up from the oven/counter, etc.

  • I am just looking for some Kosher for Passover restaurants for my boss. Most of you mistook the reason for this message board. Go argue about traditions somewhere else and let’s stick to the program. Where in Midtown can you have a decent Kosher for Passover lunch? Or at least, what restaurants are serving Matzoh ball soup or Matzoh brie? Thanks.

Leave a Reply

You must log in or register to post a comment.