When it comes to keeping kosher in the Nation’s Capital, the choices are not immense. Changing this are the partners and founders of Schmaltz Brothers – Chap Gage, of Susan Gage Caterers and Yehuda Malka – who are now bringing contemporary kosher dishes to their first brick-and-mortar concept in Washington, DC. Opening Fall 2021, Gage and Malka will open HAMAKOM – a Hebrew word, meaning “The Place” – a modern, fast-casual restaurant at the George Washington University Gerwiz Hillel Center. Nationwide, this marks the second free-standing, glatt kosher restaurant, certified by the Orthodox Union, that is attached to a university and open to the public [Rimon at Tulane University is the first.] And, in Washington, D.C. – HAMAKOM will become the second certified glatt kosher restaurant in the city.
Malka and the Executive Chef Colin Penn [pictured above] creatively tackle all the religious mandates with an abundance of delicious dairy-free, beef, poultry, vegetarian, and vegan options. Today’s most discerning palates find joy in clean and invigorating foods, and the potential is vast for healthy preparations and presentations with vegetables. The process of all food production is monitored by an integral team member – the Mashgiach [mahsh-gee-ahkh] – who supervises the daily operation of a kosher establishment. While the world is experiencing a new era, demanding the cleanest practices possible in the culinary industry – kosher procedures have appreciated this approach for centuries. There is a purity in respecting what comes from the Earth and how certain ingredients pair together.
HAMAKOM will exceed expectations for elevated kosher dishes with offerings from breakfast to dinner and everything in between, all expertly presented by Executive Chef Colin Penn and his culinary team. Early risers can expect an invigorating start with selections like the Mission Fig and Tahini Toast with Maple Butter and Sea Salt atop toasted Sourdough Bread or the Eggs N’ An Avocado featuring Baked Eggs in a roasted Avocado shell with a Sun-Dried Tomato, Arugula Salad [pictured above.] Afternoon and early evening fare showcase a diverse menu of plant-based dishes loaded with nutrients, such as the Grain Bowl featuring Quinoa, Basmati Rice, Cucumber, Tomato, Black Beans, Wasabi, Pickled Red Cabbage, Chickpeas, garnished with a spicy Skhug Green Goddess Dressing. Diners can also choose from an appetizing array of soups, salads, and sandwiches like the playful riff on the classic Nashville Hot Chicken featuring Schmaltz Fried Chicken Breast, Nashville Hot Spice, Pickles, Slaw, and a signature “Secret Sauce,” all layered between a Challah Bun and the Hot Pastrami Sandwich with Kraut, Wasabi Slaw, Atomic Horseradish, and Russian Dressing on toasted Rye [pictured above.] Entrees include the Bubbie’s “Been Smoking” BBQ Brisket, smoked in-house with Mesquite Wood Chips and served alongside a tangy Cherry Barbecue Sauce, Braised Collard Greens, and vegan Mac and Cheez.
Look to satisfy sweet tooth cravings with the Tahini Banana Parfait or gooey-chewy Cookies – Peanut Butter, Chocolate Chip, and Snickerdoodle varieties. Non-alcoholic libations promise to make guests forget all about spirits, from the refreshing Dragon Fruit Melon Tonic to the energizing, turmeric touched Golden Milk Iced Latte, paired perfectly for the ultimate sipping pleasure. A rotating selection of daily prepared grab-and-go items will also be available, including a range of sandwiches and salads.
At HAMAKOM the guiding culinary philosophy is “Cleaner, Fresher, Kosher” – and the delicious results are tasted in every bite!
Hours of operation: Sunday 11AM-3PM, Monday-Thursday 10AM-8PM, Friday 10AM-2PM. HAMAKOM at the GW Hillel will be closed on Friday evening through Sunday morning in honor of Shabbat.