Saturday, April 21, 2007

Kosher noshing on the 18th mile

Mile Chai Café extends menu to breakfast

Newton residents have always enjoyed their view on Marathon Monday from the 18th mile – right at the corner of Commonwealth Avenue and Chestnut Street. And on April 16, during the 111th running of the Boston Marathon, those Newtonites will also enjoy full kosher lunches for the fourth consecutive year.

The Mile Chai Café, which is housed in the driveway of Temple Reyim congregants James Michel and Sheri Goldberg, was the brainchild of fellow congregant Carol Stollar. The word “chai” in Hebrew means “life,” and its letters, when added, equal 18. Thus, the Mile Chai Café was born.
“I just thought it was a golden opportunity,” Stollar said of the food stand, the only one in the neighborhood. “This gives people a chance to eat kosher.”
This year, the café will boast a menu for both breakfast and lunch because the race is starting earlier than usual. So if your pleasure is muffins or hotdogs, or even cotton candy, they’ll have you covered.
It’s a much improved menu from last year, when Marathon Monday fell on Passover and the café was limited to kosher for Passover knishes, fruit salad and hotdogs on a stick.
“We have the best hotdogs in town,” said Stollar. “We cook them with heart. We sold out last year.”
Spectators will have extra reason to cheer this year, as well. Temple Reyim congregants Jessie Rossman, daughter of Stuart and Shelly Rossman, and Gail Schulman will be running in the event.
Sponsored by Temple Reyim, all proceeds from the café go to educational programs at the synagogue. And according to Temple Reyim president, and Stollar’s husband, David, the synagogue is happy to be a part of the Mile Chai.
“I think it’s a service to the community,” he said. “Families want to go out and watch the marathon and know they can get kosher food and drinks. And we’re it.”
And after three successful races Stollar believes the Mile Chai will be around for many years to come.
“We have become a fixture on the route,” she said. “We feel we’re a part of the marathon experience.”