Manchester Jewish Museum Café was voted Café or Restaurant of the Year at 2022 Museums + Heritage Awards ceremony on Wednesday, May 11.
The 18 winners of the 20th Museums + Heritage Awards were announced on Wednesday, 11 May 2022 in London. Many well-known organisations, including The Secret Museum or the Imperial War Museum London, were recognised for their efforts in categories including community engagement, sustainability, digital innovation, learning, and temporary or permanent exhibitions. The awards were sponsored by Chargeurs Museums Studio. They celebrate innovation and ground-breaking projects from museums, galleries and heritage visitor attractions across the UK and overseas.
Manchester Jewish Museum was nominated in two categories and took home one award. The Café or Restaurant of the Year title went to Manchester Jewish Museum Café and the award for the Permanent Exhibition of the Year went to the London-based Imperial War Museum. Alex Cropper, the Curator from Manchester Jewish Museum, who was representing the organisation at the awards ceremony commented:
“It felt so exciting to be at the Museum and Heritage Awards on Wednesday night and to gather to celebrate our sector for the first time since the pandemic – there was a real buzz in the room. And to win an award was the icing on the cake! It was an honour to accept the Café of the Year award on stage on behalf of our incredible café team and great to see our name up there amongst such incredible museums in the Permanent Gallery of the Year category.”
The Café Team Leader Lisa Everingham commented: ”That’s really big news and a great success of the whole team effort!”.
The Café Team Leader Joe Davey added: ”It feels great to get recognition at such an important event like the Museums + Heritage Awards. Being voted the café of the year proves that we are on the right track, interpreting the traditions in a playful but respectful way. It’s a great success of the whole team, including Rachel who’s put together the menu and the fantastic work of all our volunteers”.
We are very proud of our whole Café crew – Lisa, Joe, Kate, Bethan and Rachel, as well as our fantastic volunteers – as we wouldn’t have won this award without their amazing work.
Our café opened last year, following a 2 year, £6m redevelopment and extension of the museum building. Located front and centre of the Museum’s new entrance, overlooking Cheetham Hill, Manchester’s most diverse neighbourhood, the museum café is serving a contemporary vegetarian kosher-style menu. With food being at the heart of the Jewish home and Jewish culture, our café offers a welcoming home-from-home atmosphere serving a nourishing, comforting menu. Visitors can enjoy a selection of Sephardi and Ashkenazi dishes whilst learning about the history and traditions of Jewish food. The majority of the café food is prepared on site using kosher, vegetarian and largely locally sourced whole-food ingredients, though it is not prepared under Beth Din supervision. All the food served is suitable for vegetarians and there is also a wide range of kosher pre-packaged snacks available.
The café also offers a seasonal menu surrounding Jewish holidays. One of the latest menu additions was the Not Quite Traditional ‘Chicken’ Soup, a hearty vegetarian broth with oyster mushrooms and Matzo balls. The soup was MJM Café Team’s own, meat-free interpretation of the traditional Jewish dish and was introduced to accommodate those visitors observing the Jewish festival of Passover. Following on from the success of the new dish our café crew have decided to keep it on the menu and serve it each Friday and Saturday as part of museum’s special Sabbath experience.
MJM Café is open from 10am – 4pm daily and serves hot food from 11.30am – 2.30pm