Student Who Ran Restaurant Out of His Dorm Room Forced to Close Up Shop

Staff Writer
Columbia University student entrepreneur forced to shut down his dorm dinner series and move out of his apartment
Columbia University terminated Jonah Reider’s lease, effective May 31.

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Columbia University terminated Jonah Reider’s lease, effective May 31.

Do you remember the genius student at Columbia University who operated a mini restaurant out of his dorm? Although Pith, Jonah Reider’s dinner series, experienced its share of notoriety and a months-long waiting list, Columbia University housing has booted the young entrepreneur. He has been asked to leave the faculty dorm where he currently lives and cooks.

“I am writing to inform you that I will terminate your sublease effective May 31, 2016 per Columbia Housing’s instructions,” said his landlord, a professor, in an email obtained by the Wall Street Journal. “Ongoing issues that have been relayed to me by the university have made this necessary.”

The message specifically cited “condition hazardous to all tenants in the building.”

A Columbia spokesperson denied to comment on the situation. Reider, as always, has maintained that his dinner series is not a business. He only charges a dinner admission fee to cover overhead costs of preparation.

“I thought I was doing really well,” Reider told The Wall Street Journal, “but I’m not making any money from this, and I’m about to get booted from my apartment.”

Reider is set to graduate from Columbia University later this month, and may continue Pith in some form or another — this time in a regular apartment building instead of dormitory housing. 

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