Global Table Fundraiser Includes Two City Market Restaurants

The Blue Nile serves Ethiopian cuisine at 20 E. Fifth St. in the River Market.

Two City Market restaurants, the Blue Nile and The Bite, are included in this year’s annual Global Table event to spotlight immigrant contributions to Kansas City and raise funds for the Jewish Vocational Service.

Each Monday in May, the JVS has organized a carryout cuisine event at four restaurants owned by immigrants. This is the ninth annual Global Table fundraiser, and appropriately because of Covid, it’s Global Table to Go this year.

The event is co-sponsored by Julie Doane Rev. Robert Lee Hill, according to a JVS press release.

“I’m inspired by the resiliency and tenacity of newcomers resettled, and grateful this year’s event includes delicious food from talented, diverse restaurateurs and entrepreneurs,” Doane said in a statement.

Along with food, participants will receive a “toolkit” of enrichment activities to engage them with the featured culture of the evening, according to the release.

The four participating restaurants are:

-May 3:Blue Nile Cafe, 20 E. Fifth St.

-May 10: Fannie’s West African & Tropical Cuisine, 4105 Troost Ave.

-May 17: Mediterranean Market, 1401 Westport Rd.

-May 24: The Bite, 23 E. Third St.

Diners can select just one evening or try all four nights. You can register here.

The Bite opened inside the City Market arcade at 23 E. Third St. in 2014.

The Blue Nile Cafe features Ethiopian cuisine. Its owners are Daniel and Selam Fikru.

Daniel came to the U.S. in 1981 on a student visa. He was later granted asylum because of the unstable political situation in his home country. Selam was his high school sweetheart and the two were separated nine years before she arrived in the U.S. in 1991.

“The pair grew up around food and cooking,” according to the release, “and they see Blue Nile as a way to stay deeply connected to their culture while making Kansas City their home.”

The Bite opened in the City Market in 2014. Owner and chef Carlos Mortera serves Mexican and Korean inspired sandwiches as well as pozole, a Mexican hominy and meat stew, according to the release.

His family moved to Kansas City from Mexico when he was in middle school so his father could pursue electrical engineering. Mortera met his future wife, Amy, in the City Market and the couple now have a nine-month-old daughter.

Mortera and his father opened Poi-Ō, a Mexican barbecue chicken restaurant, on the West Side off Southwest Boulevard in 2018. That restaurant recently closed, but the pair plan to re-open in a new location soon, according to the release.

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