NEW YORK — Elan Kornblum, “The Restaurant Guy" and President & Publisher of the Great Kosher Restaurants Magazine is on a crusade. He is pushing for upscale restaurants to be more than just destinations for fine dining. Mr. Kornblum is teaming up with restaurants to bring “bigger and more interesting things to capture the attention of restaurant goers.” He adds: “It is a trend that has been happening for a few years, with some restaurants doing wine dinners, some bringing in ‘talent' to entertain their guests and some opening their doors beyond the work week like Friday night (and now some for Shavuos). So we are continuing that trend but making it more prevalent and available to the masses.”
The trend that he speaks of and seems to be increasing in popularity are events like one that Le Marais, one of New York’s premier kosher steakhouse, sponsored this week. Their Summer Grilling Class, featured steaks, burgers and sausages, Single Malt Scotch, Wine and Beer while Eating and Learning Best Grilling Methods. The cost of $125.00 per person included a full dinner and a packet that included recipes for dry rubs and sauces.
Kornblum and the restaurants seem to be turning it up a notch with such events as Allison Joseph’s signature “Finding G-d in Hawaii,” which is about her childhood existential crisis, her search for meaning, and the life-changing answers she found in a tropical rain forest. The event scheduled for May 20th at J-Soho (the former Jezebel now under the OU) will set you back $60 in advance and $70 at the door.
On May 28th Brooklyn’s T-Fusion is sponsorimg “Hollywood Chavruta: A journey of learning and friendship with actress Mayim Bialik.”The cost $55 in advance and $65 at the door. Kornblum expects this trend to pick up steam as restaurants seek to become more than just a place with a dining experience.