Where to Break the Fast

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courtesy of ‘Pug50’

For Jews, Yom Kippur’s Break-the-Fast meal is the caloric equivalent of Thanksgiving. After 24 hours of penitent fasting, you compensate for a day’s worth of eating in a frenzy of bagels, lox and whitefish salad. I’ve honestly seen entire pans of noodle kugel disappear in under five minutes. Not surprisingly, the holiday generally ends with hours of complaining about how much everyone ate. It isn’t pretty, but it’s tradition.

But for out-of-town transplants, recreating the customary gluttony might be a difficult task. Maybe you don’t have family or friends close by. Or perhaps hosting guests – or even a full-size bed – just isn’t possible in your shoebox of an English basement. But that’s no reason to break the fast at home by yourself. Because let’s face it – that feels a lot like emotional binge eating.

So here are a few options to help make this Saturday’s Yom Kippur celebration merry and bright. They range from the religious to the ridiculous, but all guarantee some belly-busting good times.

Washington Hebrew Congregation

If you’re planning on going to services, this is a pretty good bang for your buck. For $65, non-members ages 22 – 39 can attend all Kol Nidre (that’s Yom Kippur Eve, in case you didn’t know) and Yom Kippur services, plus a Break the Fast at the temple. Online ticket sales end today at noon, so plan accordingly.

3935 Macomb Street NW
Washington, DC 20016

Adas Israel

In a remarkable display of hospitality, Adas Israel is offering a free Break the Fast. You don’t have to go to services, and you don’t have to be a member. You can just show up. How fantastic is that? The meal begins around 8:00 p.m. after the conclusion of evening services.

2850 Quebec Street NW
Washington, DC 20008


Not only is Dino offering a legit Break the Fast meal, but it’s also serving Kol Nidre dinner. The family-style meals will be served at 4:30 p.m. on Friday and 5:30 p.m. on Saturday, and will include what can only be described as Jewish/Italian fusion. It’s the next big culinary trend, I can feel it. Reservations are recommended. Prices are $39 for adults and $20 for children.

3435 Connecticut Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20008

Fogo de Chão

If you’re really serious about gorging, this is the place for you. This all-you-can-eat extravaganza features 15 cuts of meat, one of which will surely taste like brisket. In addition to beef, chicken, lamb and sausage, the restaurant also offers unlimited side dishes and a salad bar.  Price is $49.50 per person, or $24.50 if you’re going the vegetarian route and sticking with the salad bar.

1101 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20004

H Street Festival

With food stalls from some of your favorite restaurants, the H Street Festival is a great way to get stuffed fast. Plus, the more you eat, the more you’ll be supporting the local community. So really, you’re pigging out for a cause. Keep in mind that the festival only runs through 6:00 p.m., so you might have to get creative with your definition of “sundown.”

Rebecca Gross

Raised in nearby MoCo, Rebecca happily jumped the District line in 2005. When not stuck behind a computer, she can be found exploring the city’s many wonders, usually with her trusty canine sidekick Jasper Jones. Questions, comments, concerns? Email her at RebeccaGross (at) WeLoveDC.com.

3 thoughts on “Where to Break the Fast

  1. A word to the wise on Fogo, we do the appetizing food thing for a reason: it’s nice and light. I tried to break the fast with lasagna one year in college, and my stomach did not like it one bit.

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