Chef Cari opens new kosher restaurant with seating in Oak Park, Ess in Co. – Detroit Jewish News – The Jewish News | Directory Mayhem

Chef Cari Herskovitz Rosenbloom at the counter of the new restaurant she opened with her husband Israel. (Esther Allweiss Ingber)

After weeks of being run by word of mouth by chef Cari Herskovitz Rosenbloom, chef Cari Herskovitz Rosenbloom’s restaurant is now ready for prime time.

In the “fried chicken wars” (the hour Detroit Magazine says is one thing), the only local kosher participant I know of is the crispy fried chicken served at Ess In co. in the oak park. (“Ess” means “eat” in Yiddish.) After weeks of running by word of mouth by chef Cari Herskovitz Rosenbloom, chef Cari Herskovitz Rosenbloom’s restaurant is now ready for prime time.

Chef Cari, along with her husband Yisroel “Israel” Rosenbloom, is well known in the Jewish community as a caterer, operator of food trucks The Spot and Fish Bowl, and owner of 4-year-old Wok In Cari Out, a Chinese. Its location at 10 Mile in Southfield is less than a mile from Ess In, which replaced a deli on the ground floor of the Crown Pointe Office Building.

The chef’s first one-dining room restaurant features incredibly deep fried chicken that’s brine soaked for at least 24 hours before frying. Another specialty is English-style fish and chips. Upon customer request, the menu also includes falafel and other staples of traditional Israeli cuisine.

Two pieces of crispy fried chicken
Two pieces of crispy fried chicken. Esther Allweiss Inger | Detroit Jewish News

“I’m grateful that Detroit supported me,” said Chef Cari, a graduate of the National Gourmet Institute in New York City. Growing up in the area, she valued eating healthy, home-cooked meals. “My two Hungarian bubbies always wanted me to be a chef,” she said. Professional cooking could extend to the Rosenbloom daughters aged 4 and 6. Mom said they love making challah with her in the family kitchen.

With Ess In, chef Cari and Israel have created a cute, cozy restaurant. On two walls enclosing the kitchen, Josh Young painted a mural of a farmhouse, complete with weathered red clapboards, curtained windows, and a white fence. Pallet wood panels cover other walls.

The front counter, topped with bottles of hometown Faygo pop, has criss-crossing barnwood “doors” below. There’s a wall menu to order, just like Chef Cari’s Chinese restaurant, but Ess In offers guests the option of dining in, takeout, or curbside pickup. Thirty guests can be seated at high and low tables or at the bar, which is made out of a 10-foot piece of living wood.

A look into the dining room.
A look into the dining room. Esther Allweiss Inger | Detroit Jewish News

A full time Mashiach of the Council of Orthodox Rabbis provides kashrut oversight in Ess In. “We make quality food that happens to be kosher,” said Chef Cari. For them, only fresh ingredients come into question – from the farm to the table. The gastronomic concept is “Fast Casual, not Fast Food”. Meals are brought to guests on metal trays lined with old-fashioned newspaper. Cardboard boats hold inserts.

I recently ordered the quarter roast chicken, a breast and a wing (I could have had a thigh and a leg), with two small sides. Mine were mashed potatoes with gravy and creamed spinach. Other options include vegan mac and cheese, homemade onion rings, fried dill pickles, and Israeli or purple slaw.

Cobb salad.
Cobb salad Esther Allweiss Inger | Detroit Jewish News

Half a chicken and an eight-piece whole chicken always have larger sides. Separate chicken pieces can be added. Also on the menu are chicken wings, chicken sandwiches, and chicken tacos in different treatments.

Food Review: My large chicken breast had the crispy, properly seasoned topping I was expecting and was not dry on the inside. Both pieces were delicious. Scratch mashed potatoes, like this one, are always better. But if you’re the type who likes to control how much dressing goes on your salad, consider requesting your sauce as a side. I have never tasted better tasting creamed spinach. My vegetable dish with fresh spinach was delivered after the rest of my dinner. “Nobody wants creamed spinach that’s been sitting under a warmer,” explained chef Cari.

The fried fish and chips here are large, lightly breaded cod fillets with hand-cut fries. First fried at low temperature, the fries are short fried to order. It’s another satisfying meal. But as for the Kishke Bombs I’ve tried – let’s just say they might be an acquired taste.

Ess In opens at 3pm on Sundays and 11am on other days. But of course never on Shabbat Saturday.

Eat In Co.
25900 Greenfield, Oak Park
(248) 850-8177
$$$ from $$$$$

Leave a Comment