Sunday, August 9, 2009

The University of San Francisco Goes Kosher All the Way to Welcome the JCC Maccabi Games


Bon Appetit Kitchen at The University of San Francisco (a major private Jesuit-Catholic University, with an on site church and a group of Monks living on campus) became kosher overnight to accommodate the Jewish Olympic games!

And we, at Bon Appetit, catered every meal for a group of 3000 people (athletes, JCC staff and organizers, coaches, VIPs etc.) for 5 full days.
So 10 days before the opening of the game, we got ready.
The Bon Appetit USF kitchen became empty.
and we hired a major contractor to deep clean the stoves, the ovens, the walls etc…

And of course we cleaned and closed the Cafeteria...

The Rabbis kosherized all our cooking equipment by blow torching any left over of non-kosher food in the ovens.

And the Rabbis kosherized all cooking utensils in our soup pots by boiling them.

It took an army of 12 people to unpack the new cooking utensils, thousands of brand new plates, cutlery, platters etc.

We posted signs -in all languages used in the kitchen- on our fridges,
on our racks, and all around to remember the kosher areas.

We ONLY ordered kosher food
and the truck that carried the Kosher merchandise that arrived from Los Angeles was so big, it could not make it to our loading dock...
We learned the basic rules of kosher food: no mixing of dairy and meat products and posted a sign in our Cafeteria
We collected hundreds of KOSHER CERTIFICATES for EACH SINGLE PRODUCT(canned goods, dairy products, bakery items etc...)
and made sure all our products were accepted by the Rabbis. For instance we could not find KOSHER shredded mozzarella so Chef Bobby Morano had to shred 100 lbs of it and always with a smile! No task was too big...

We briefed our kitchen staff
and our cafeteria staff. We talked logistics every single day.
Let’s the Games Begin. We created a sign in Hebrew to welcome everyone

The cafeteria was buzzing with guests from around the world

Baskets were full of freshly shipped organic fruit: bananas, peaches, nectarines, cherries, strawberries…

Our friendly staff was making sure everything was resplenished by the minute

So while the cafeteria was busy (3000 people in a 4-hour span)
Our Rabbis were supervising at all time in the kitchen and in the Cafeteria.

The USA delegation adored our food.

The Delegation from Great Britain loved our food...and our Californian fruit.

The Mexican Delegation was enjoying meals together.

And the USF Police loved our food too…

Some coaches were sitting down enjoying their lunch

And of course our Rabbis could not dream of better kosher food

Some lucky winners getting breakfast: Gold Medalists from New Jersey Basket-ball Team

Two Very Hungry Tennis Players (and Gold Medal Winners) from Israel

And less lucky (but still hungry) volley ball player from Florida

Our friendly staff met some Washington DC representatives raving about their meals

The JCC main organizers (Jackie and Anne) were taking brief breaks to enjoy food too…
And we were thankful for extra help from the JCC volunteers in the Cafeteria

Our staff was very the kitchen..and in the cafeteria

And the Catering office became the temporary Synagogue and Official rabbinical headquarters for our 3 on-site Rabbis.

At the end of the Games, we realized how much we enjoyed every minute of it. and look forward to hosting more kosher events. Because now we are ready: no task is too big, no challenge is too difficult for Bon Appetit Team!

בבקשה רישמו את הערותיכם למטה