L.I. Caterers Accused Of Lying About Being Kosher

MELVILLE, NY (CBSNewYork) – According to the general manager and chef of Morrell Caterers on Long Island, people paid a premium for Kosher foods at over 200 weddings, Bar and Bat Mitzvahs, and other events, but everything was tainted.

WCBS 880’s Sophia Hall On The Story

“Those same tables, those same pots and pans, those same platters and utensils that were used for Kosher foods were also used to prepare the non-Kosher events as well,” said general manager Tom Cataldo.

Cataldo, who has been general manager since 1997, and chef Micheal Savitsky are suing the owner of the catering company, Scott Morrell.

They say it has been going on for a year and a half and want to force Morrell to stop tainting the food.

Cataldo says he was getting sick inside.

Cataldo told WCBS 880 reporter Sophia Hall the owner was trying to cut corners by not having a separate kitchen for Kosher and non-Kosher foods.

“We would have our Kosher foods stored and next to it a bucket of shrimp,” said Cataldo.

1010 WINS’ Carol D’Auria reports

Cataldo also claims Morrell poured cheaper alcohol into empty high-end liquor bottles and sold them at premium prices.

“I have never violated any Kashrut rules ever,” said Morell.

Morrell’s attorney claims the lawsuit has nothing to due with being Kosher, but with his involvement in a separate $18 million lawsuit.

Morrell Caterers operates at Temple Beth Torah in Melville, Temple Israel in Lawrence, and the Woodbury Jewish Center in Woodbury.

Rabbi Raphael Adler of the Woodbury Jewish Center told CBS2’s Carolyn Gusoff that if the allegations are true then it is an act of betrayal.

“We are shocked and it’s disgusting and its come to us as a complete surprise,” he said.

Workers claim that the betrayal may have gone beyond food. They say that top shelf liquor bottles were refilled with low end products.

Morrell has denied the allegations and says that he invites a Kosher oversight board to come and inspect.

What do you have to say about this? Sound off in the comments section below!

  • i love bacon and ham samwitches

    kosher smosher…eat a ham sandwich and get over it. the christians are hve been allowed for many years to eat meat on friday. this meat ban was lifted by the pope over 30 years ago. it should be the same with kosher. in biblical times the pork was killing jews, so the head rabbi (or whatever) said no pork. youjews sure do not know what you are missing not being able to eat BACON and eggs on a saturday morning.OI

    • dr. chef

      Your comment is both ignorant and borders on anti-semitism. Especially when you refer to “you jews”! People have hteir beliefs, based on religion, and ethics. You shouold live your life as you please, but don’t judge those who you know nothing about! Shame on you!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      • Ian

        I think that the guy is trying to say is that people are getting really sick of the Jewish attitude towards their Kosher beliefs which represent like 2% of the American population requiring their U or K or D symbols and respect for their dietary requirements on everything…… America is not Israel and frankly the nation shouldn’t have to cater to such a small ethnic group…. BUT Jewish people love to complain! Washington is filled with Jewish lobbyists and for God’s sake we still give israel loads of tax dollars for their defense program even though the poor people of Mississippi dont have jobs or access to a decent education! WTF

        • dr. chef

          ….and YOUR comment has WHAT to do about an observant Jew patronizing a supposedly kosher establishment, expecting nothing more than the kosher products they are paying for because that is what theie PERSONAL beliefs require them to do??????????????????????

  • ira kellman

    I called the Agency which supervises the Glattb Kosher catering and they said there was no problem. They are the Flatbush Vaad Hakashruth in Brooklyn.They are considered very reliable.

    • dr chef

      Why would you think that the Vaad of Flatbush would have any idea, either good or bad, what goes on in Temples on Long Island? The Vaad will not say anything negative unless they know something for certain!!!!!!

      • ira Kellman

        The Vaad has a fulltime Mashgiach at the commisary and another at Temple Israel when a Glatt event takes place.Don’t be so quick to bury someone based on disgrunteled employees involved in a lawsuit.

  • todd

    i am in the food business and scott was very specific that i should only bring him kosher samples. i do not do business with him and he ended up not purchasing anything from me. yet i still showed him kosher samples this is definitely a huge mistake

  • Martha

    I have been to several weddings and bar/bat mitzvahs that happened to be catered by Mr. Morrell. They have all been lovely catered affairs. Obviously Misters Cataldo and Savitsky are disgruntled employees. I feel sorry that Mr. Morrell has to suffer because of these greedy men’s allegations. I sincerely hope justice prevails.

  • R.T.

    The first thing I think of in stories like these is of disgruntled employees seeking a payday by discrediting their boss. It’s so easy to do and it happens a thousand times a day.

  • Babs

    Its all about greed. Greedy greedy greedy. Im not surprised. As far as being kosher I feel our higher power will not have a problem with the unsuspecting victims at all they did nothing wrong

  • ken

    He’s a spanish jew you fool. Now go practice your 2nd century voodoo.

  • Pinny

    What ethnic slur? “mashgichim”, is plural for “mashgiach”, or kosher supervisor. Jake is asking a most basic question – did this caterer have kosher supervision? Who certified it as kosher? Any kosher agency worth its name would NEVER give certification to a company doing what the chef and manager are alleging.

  • Diesel

    This isn’t funny. Representing nonkosher food as kosher violates New York State law, and if it can be proven, Mr. Morell should be prosecuted. Meanwhile, the synagogues involved will likely find other caterers, because nobody is going to book an affair with Morell any more.

    • Saul Fienstein

      Allegedly non kosher food. This is just a claim, no evidence has been displayed to show anything. Its 2 disgruntled ex employees against an honest business man.

  • Jake

    Where were the mashgichim?

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