Bay Area Experiences Halal Restaurant Week for the First Time

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The United States Witnesses Its Very First Halal Restaurant Event

Starting Wednesday, the state will experience its very first Halal Restaurant Week, which got the Bay Area Halal Foodies group preparing themselves to taste and savor delicious dishes offered by multiple Halal diners in the upcoming event.

The BAHF Facebook Group founder Abbas Mohamed and Halalfest, Inc both organized the occasion. The Halal Restaurant Week will feature eateries that sell Halal food to help promote dishes following Islamic dietary rituals. According to organizers Oakland’s Abbas Mohamed and San Jose’s Irfan Rydhan, the United States would witness its very first restaurant week concentrating solely on food served according to halal standards.

From Wednesday to December 13, restaurants joining the event would offer customers freebies and special discounts to help them enjoy their halal food experiences. Each day of the halal week, different diners would set up their dishes, accompanied by every establishment’s special offers.

Hundreds of people expressed enthusiasm with the establishment of such an occasion. For instance, the Bay Area Halal Foodies Facebook group member Yasmeen Rasheed openly showed her support for the upcoming event. According to Rasheed, she has never seen a cool initiative like this, given that she’s a Muslim who often gets exposed to Halal cuisine. She further commented that the restaurant week is an opportunity to bring diverse communities together and enjoy delicious halal food in San Francisco. Rasheed also showed her delight that the event could help promote her fellow Muslims’ businesses.

The Events’ Details and Participating Restaurants

Excited customers can look forward to the nearing occasion on Wednesday as it features multiple Halal restaurants that are famous across the Bay Area. Several of the confirmed participants include Sunnyvale’s Lados, Oakland’s Maya Halal Taqueria, Sant Clara’s Krusti Pizza and Pasta, Fremont’s El Halal Amigos (taco truck), Pleasanton’s iniBurger, Tracy’s Falafel Flame, and San Francisco’s Kinara Fusion. 

Aside from enjoying the food, the event also allows diners to earn additional points by completing obstacles and visiting eateries. Top-scoring food lovers will receive exciting awards and prizes from the occasion. Moreover, organizers will also provide participants with perks, such as free halal food products, commemorative merchandise, and gift cards – all rolled into $1500 worth of incentives.

The event’s sponsors consist of the Islamic Food and Nutrition Council of America, Whole Foods, and Yelp East Bay. Additionally, anyone is free to join the occasion. The promotions would take place online through the Bay Area Halal Foodies group on Facebook and other social media pages of Halalfest. Partakers interested in earning points and collecting freebies can comment on the event’s participating restaurants by typing in “Halla Restaurant Week” on their respective blogs and websites.

Muslims’ Halal History and Tradition

According to the official Halalfest website, “Halal” is an Arabic term that means “Permissible” in English. The word refers to Muslims’ Islamic dietary laws, which they practice with strictness and consistency. Similar to the Jews’ Kosher cuisine, Halal food avoids anything derived from alcoholic drinks and swine flesh. However, Halal allows exceptions for serving dishes with specific food ingredients. According to Muslims, it is permissible for them to eat animals like Halal seafood, chicken, beef, turkey, deer, and goat.

To consider specific meat as Halal, Muslims must slaughter the animal by mentioning God’s name during its preparation ritual. Additionally, Halal’s purpose is to stay away from food ingredients that God forbids to help people live a longer and healthier life in the long run. Despite the existence of diverse interpretations of Halal, the doctrine exists to meet the previously mentioned goal. 

Animals used for Halal usually eat natural corn, grains, or grass. It is unlawful in Islam to feed the said animals with chemical-induced nutriments.