Wednesday, April 08, 2020

(Columbus Dispatch) The Buckeye Kosher BBQ Festival will be held, of course, in the Buckeye State, in Columbus, Ohio on Aug. 9, at Pump House Park on the Near East Side. The all-kosher event will be the first of its kind in central Ohio. Detroit-area pit master Daniel Kohn will serve up kosher hamburgers, hot dogs and chicken drumsticks. He’ll also have gourmet offerings such as hamburgers and hot dogs topped with barbecue brisket or corned beef and portabella mushrooms topped with barbecue brisket. Vegetarians can order a portabella sans meat.

Stuart Appelbaum, who initiated the event with Daniel Newman, said the Columbus area needed an event to bring together the Jewish community. The festival hopes to someday invite teams to compete, vying to make the best brisket or ribs or sauce, he said.

Newman said the event seeks to promote kosher food in Columbus and is being held under the auspices of Buckeye Kosher, the local kosher-certifying agency. “Our desire is to make more kosher options in Columbus,” Newman said. “This is partly to show, ‘ Hey, there’s a community here,’ and if you’re a restaurateur, there’s a community you can serve to that’s being underserved right now.”

Kosher options can be found at the Jewish Community Center of Greater Columbus, Wexner Heritage Village, Hillel at Ohio State University, the Kroger on E. Broad Street and Catering by Chani take-out. Synagogues offer some kosher events throughout the year, festival volunteer Sima Gellman said. “People are just craving opportunities to eat out as a family.”

Organizers are asking for a $2 donation for admission to the festival. Kohn, who operates a kosher catering company and restaurant, is donating his services. He uses Grow & Behold, grass-fed organic kosher meat that comes from small family farms. He and his crew will cook on massive grills that will be taken to the park from local synagogues.