Twenty years after the inauguration of the first Kosher McDonald’s outside Israel, Buenos Aires will be home to a kosher fast food stand – in a football stadium.
The stand will open next week in the Boca Juniors’ Bombonera stadium, a city landmark. Argentine football star Diego Maradona early in his career led the team to the league title in his first year with the club. It is believed to be the first kosher fast food stand at a footbal stadium in Latin America.
Bocasher – combining Boca and kosher, or “casher,” as it is pronounced in Spanish will open on Wednesday when Boca Juniors host Paraguay’s Libertad in the Libertadores Cup – South America’s equivalent of the UEFA Champions League.
Boca Juniors President Daniel Angelici launched the idea four months ago while watching a Miami Heat basketball game with a Jewish friend and ate at the arena’s Kosher Kingdom kiosk set up for Jewish Heritage night.
The initiative is led by the Chabad Lubavitch Hasidic movement in the La Boca neighborhood, the area near the Buenos Aires port in which the stadium and the museum of the club are located.
For the past three years, Chabad emissaries have stood outside the stadium and offered visitors a chance to put on tefillin, or phylacteries.
Rabbi Daniel Oppenheimer, an Argentine expert in the field of kashrut, will supervise the stand. He also opened the first Kosher Mc Donald’s outside Israel in the Abasto shopping mall of Buenos Aires exactly 20 years ago.
The stand will serve hamburgers, hot dogs and choripan, an iconic local sandwich made of a grilled sausage called chorizo and the bread, which in Spanish is “pan,” for the same price of the non-kosher food at the stadium.
Boca, a team founded in 1905, has played in the first division since 1913, becoming the most successful team from Argentina with 67 titles, 22 of them internationals cups. It has won the last two cups in the Superliga, the national first division league.