Restaurateur Shamed Out Of Kosher Food Scene Because Wife Isn't Jewish, Lawsuit Alleges

A restaurant owner in the Bronx is claiming he's been slandered by local rabbis because his wife isn't Jewish. Dimitry Berezovskiy alleges that his landlord Moses Marx and the Riverdale rabbinical council attempted to "bankrupt" him by spreading false rumors that he'd lost his kosher certification, according to court documents obtained by the New York Post.

In a lawsuit filed with the Bronx Supreme Court, it is alleged that Marx and the Vaad Ha'Rabbonim of Riverdale wanted Berezovskiy's high-end eatery, Riverdale K Grill House, vacated from its current space "at about the same time [they] learned that Mr. Berezovskiy's wife was not Jewish."

Rabbinical council member Rabbi Asher Bush told the New York Post that "the whole thing is a fabrication."

Back in November, Berezovskiy told The Riverdale Press he was selling his restaurant because of the restrictions imposed by the local council limiting what he can and cannot serve. His lease required him to operate glatt kosher — meaning all meat prepared must come from animals with lungs free of imperfections.

Berezovskiy says this and other strict religious guidelines made it difficult to compete with surrounding businesses, even limiting his ability to serve certain vegetables.

"Broccoli, cauliflower, asparagus, Brussels sprouts, strawberries, raspberries, blackberries — they choked me on this side," Berezovskiy told The Riverdale Press. "I cannot serve vegetarian people. I cannot give variety of food. And everybody in the neighborhood — like the Chinese restaurant — they can sell broccoli, cauliflower. And I cannot. I don't want to break the kosher rules, but it's very hard."

The Daily Meal has reached out to Berezovskiy for further comment.

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