By: Eli Sharvit  | 

New Restaurants on Wilf and Beren Campuses, YU Raises Caf Card Minimum

This semester, YU has raised the caf card minimum for students living off campus from 250 to 400 dollars a semester, and two new restaurants opened on the Beren and Wilf campuses.

All students are required to have a minimum balance on their caf card, which is officially titled the Dining Club Card, that they can use to purchase food at campus cafeterias or at restaurants that accept the caf card. However, students who live off campus have always had a significantly lower minimum required compared to students who live in the dormitories.

Rabbi Kenneth Brander, the Vice President for University and Community Life, stated that the the minimum was raised to benefit students. “The Dining Club Card is designed to offer students a tax free secure, flexible and convenient access to Yeshiva University’s dining halls and participating local restaurants around campus...Unfortunately, we have seen students without sufficient funds forgo eating during high-pressure times over the course of a semester and therefore require a structured meal plan to ensure students, both on and off campus, have the adequate resources.”

Many students were surprised to discover the change in the caf card minimum on their bill, since no formal address to the students has been made explaining the raise. When asked why the raise was not publicized to students, Brander responded, “We should have done a better job communicating the increase with students.”

Two weeks into the semester, the restaurant Paprika opened on east 34th street, directly adjacent to Brookdale Residence Hall. Paprika offers a range of Mediterranean foods, and according to the owners it is unlike any other kosher restaurant in the area. Owner David Zaken explained that he is very excited to be a part of the Beren campus, and knows that the students will appreciate the homestyle Israeli cooking. He commented, “We aren’t fast food, falafel, or shawarma, we want to bring you the good stuff, the way your grandma would make it.”

Paprika is not yet on the caf card, but Zaken hopes it will be very soon. He has already submitted the required application and demonstrated Paprika’s official kosher certification and health standards evaluations. At time of writing, Zaken was waiting to hear back from YU.

Burgers and Grill, a burger and meat sandwich restaurant, opened up on the Wilf campus about three weeks into the start of the semester and is now on the caf card. The owner, Doron Levy, expressed his excitement for being part of the YU community. He added that even though his restaurant is new and he doesn’t know if being on the card will increase the volume of his customers, he feels it is necessary in order to compete with the other various restaurants in Washington Heights that do accept the card.