A culinary win for Achievers

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Despite the number of kosher restaurants in South Africa, kosher food often gets a bad rap. Words like oily, bland, second-rate, unappealing, unoriginal and expensive are used to describe it. When people think kosher, they may well consider eating something boring and unimaginative.
by JORDAN MOSHE | Jul 19, 2018

However, this year’s Absa Jewish Achiever Awards aims to bring a culinary cabaret to those attending the event and will attempt to redefine kosher fare.

“When it comes to the food at this year’s event, we want it to be nothing short of the most spectacular meal served the entire year,” says Howard Sackstein, chairperson of the SA Jewish Report. “Each year, we take kosher caterers on a journey to provide a meal incomparable to anything that has been done before. We ensure that the culinary experience is unique in every way.”

Sackstein stressed just how seriously the quality of the food served is taken by the organisers. “Our demands for the highest standard possible has sometimes meant up to five or six tastings of dishes until both quality and taste are perfect. We want the best and we make sure it is nothing but.”

The lengths to which organisers go to secure the finest cuisine are great. “Our mission has included buying recipe books from Nobu in London to achieve unique quality that is not considered standard here in South Africa. Nobu is perhaps the most famous Asian restaurant in London, and we want people here to know just how excellent food can really be. That is the standard we expect to deliver.”

Sackstein admits, however, that the search for the best kosher caterers in Johannesburg “has become more challenging with the disappearance of notable kosher caterers”.

He adds: “Also, finding one which can deliver 652 meals of the highest standard is far from easy. This is a tall order, but we know what we are looking for and cannot compromise.”

The search, therefore, is on. Says Sackstein: “We are determined to find a caterer that can deliver absolute perfection. We want this to be nothing short of the most remarkably memorable kosher meal, one that people will speak about for months to come.”

He concludes: “Over the years, we have set a standard of showing people that kosher does not mean inferior, boring or tasteless.

“There is no reason why we as a community should settle for anything but the very best quality, unique flavour and overall remarkable gastronomical experience.”


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