Photo Essay | The Nosh Kosher Kitchen: More than just kosher food

“When we started it was grassroots: we were trying to cook ‘Jewish’ food instead of ‘Kosher’ food. I was only a pot washer back then… When I got back in the kitchen that’s when I said, I’m not going to cook ‘Jewish’ food, you can get all the ‘Jewish’ food you want back home. That’s when I started to change the menus to Asian-based, Italian-based, Caribbean based… The menus are all cohesive to a theme, but yet they remain Kosher” – Marty Grimson, chef at Nosh Kosher Kitchen at Gelfenbein Commons Dining Hall. (Rebecca Newman/The Daily Campus)

Marty Grimson (right) serves first-semester student David Ellner. The staff at Kosher keep up to date with the lives and schedules of their regular customers. The bond between the staff and students is unlike any other dining facility on campus. Grimson said he attributes this to the fact that the staff at Kosher view the kitchen as an extension of themselves. “When you come the dining hall and you eat at Kosher, you are a guest of mine," Grimson said. (Rebecca Newman/The Daily Campus)

The Nosh Kosher Kitchen is under the supervision of the Hartford Kashrut Commission, employing two full-time Mashgiachs, Stewart Snyder and Michael Klein. A mashgiach ensures that all food products that enter the kitchen are Kosher and that all Jewish dietary laws are being followed during the preparation of the food. (Rebecca Newman/The Daily Campus)

"I love the kosher kitchen because it's really home for me. The staff who are there always greet me with a smile and genuinely ask how I’m doing. I know that with the excellent food that I get there, is the genuine family aspect that I would get at home. It’s made me feel at home at UConn since day one" – Daniel Saxon, fifth-semester economics major. (Rebecca Newman/The Daily Campus)

Marty Grimson, a chef at the Nosh Kosher Kitchen, puts care into every dish he serves. Grimson says that Kosher has developed a following with students who don’t have dietary restrictions because of the fresh ingredients versus the often quick frozen food that is served in a regular dining hall. (Rebecca Newman/The Daily Campus)

Jewish dietary laws dictate that meat and dairy products cannot be mixed when cooking and eating. Some students with anaphylaxis to dairy come to Kosher when they are serving meat because they know that dairy has never been in the meat kitchen. (Rebecca Newman/The Daily Campus)

Ivette Pagan, a kitchen assistant at the Nosh Kosher Kitchen, mixes frosting for a desert. "The cooks are always so welcoming and ready to feed me; I feel like I'm in my home here." – Nathan Schachter, first semester communications and theater double major who regularly eats at Kosher. (Rebecca Newman/The Daily Campus)

Jewish law dictates that Jews must wash their hands before eating bread. The Nosh Kosher Kitchen provides the tools; such as a ritual wash cup; for students who wish to wash their hands before their meal. (Rebecca Newman/The Daily Campus)

Students who eat only Halal make up a large portion of the Nosh Kosher Kitchen’s customer base. Nosh labels all food products, such as cooking wine, which could pose a potential problem to these students. (Rebecca Newman/The Daily Campus)

“Because I follow kosher-style, whenever I'm at towers, it just makes things a lot easier because I don't have to check the allergens of every ingredient to make sure I'm not mixing meat and dairy. It feels like eating at home because I can be more relaxed.” – Nomi Vilvovsky, first-semester statistics major. (Rebecca Newman/The Daily Campus)

“The kosher part of the dining hall is essential for everybody; for Jewish people, for Muslims, for anybody who wants really good food and really good company. The food is awesome, there’s a lot of good choices for Kosher and Halal. Kosher is outstanding in their food and the personality that comes with it… Food without love is not food at all and I think Kosher embodies that.” – Fahim Ibrahim, third-semester mechanical engineering major.

In addition to their handcrafted desert items, the Nosh Kosher Kitchen is known for Kitchen Assistant Marilyn Denlaney’s Tennessee Cheddar Puffs and tomato basil pasta salads. Chef Bruce Haney and Delaney also prepare weekly Shabbat meals which are served at Hillel on Friday and Saturday. (Rebecca Newman/The Daily Campus)


Rebecca Newman is a staff photographer for The Daily Campus. She can be reached via email at rebecca.newman@uconn.edu.