Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Pity the poor sink

Here's a bit of restaurant gossip for kosher foodies in the audience. Haikara, an upscale Japanese steak house on Third Avenue has been transformed into Smokin’ Q, a pork-serving barbecue joint. According to the New York Times, the owner of both places, Steven Levy, didn't make many changes to the decor:

His space already had the requisite brick walls and wooden floor. He added brown-and-white checkered tablecloths, installed smokers and special food warmers in the kitchen, and invested in photographs of smoke — like ethereal ink blots — for decoration. Years ago, Mr. Levy had installed a sink near the entrance so patrons could wash their hands before reciting the blessings over their kosher meal; he decided not to remove it and to improvise instead.

“Now they can wash the pork off their hands,” he said.

What I am about to say is silly and rediculous, and a rank anthropomorphization besides, but I do feel a little bad for the sink. Its fate brings to my mind the anguished words of arch-heretic Elisha Ben Avuya who, upon seeing the severed tongue of a Torah scholar on the ground, is recorded in yHag to have said: Shall the mouth that uttered pearls [of widom] lick dust?

NB: The name Haikara always seemed to me to be a sideways attempt at snark. In Hebrew, the word can be construed as "expensive." (I suppose this could have simply been another example of the sort of obtuse error made by the owners of the Super 8 Motel chain.)

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