Kohn’s Kosher Meat and Deli photo by David Kovaluk

Kohn’s Kosher Meat and Deli closes in Creve Coeur

There’s still hope that the St. Louis region’s only kosher deli and market might reopen

The only Kosher deli still in the St. Louis area is no more — for now.

Kohn’s Kosher Meat and Deli at 10405 Old Olive Street Road in Creve Coeur shuttered last week, the St. Louis Jewish Light reports. The paper got wind of the closure thanks to a notice from the Vaad Hoeir of St. Louis, the region’s kosher certifier, which seemed to imply that there’s some hope for reopening. 

“The Vaad is acutely aware of the need in St. Louis for fresh kosher meat, kosher catering and a kosher restaurant,” reads a letter posted on the restaurant’s website. “Individuals are working to make all of that available, perhaps by reopening Kohn’s, and the Vaad has done everything to support these efforts. However, numerous practical and legal issues need to be sorted through by the parties involved. We are hopeful that we will be able to announce good news early next week.”

The deli and market was purchased in 2022 by a group from then-owners Lenny Kohn and Rosemary Kohn Cooper, whose parents, Simon and Bobbi Kohn, had opened it in 1963. The members included A.J. Moll, who was in charge of the daily operations, but told Sauce by phone today that he left last April and that Kohn's had been being managed by a family member of one two silent investors. The Jewish Light reports that Yehuda Kestenbaum is one of the current owners.

"I think it was just mismanagement," Moll said of last week's closure, explaining that his assistant manager ran Kohn's after he left before departing herself.

When the business went up for sale in 2022, it caused concern among Kosher-keeping St. Louisans, as well as fans of the deli’s legendary pastrami. 

“We’re the only Vaad-certified kosher meat deli restaurant in St. Louis,” Moll told Sauce in 2022. “It would have been a huge loss to the Jewish community had it just gone away.”

That’s as true now as it was then.

Editor's note: This story was updated at 10:50 a.m. on July 10 with comment from Moll.

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