KŐLEVES RESTAURANT

Kazinczy utca 41.
BUILT IN: c. 1840


STORY 

Construction began on the plot at Kazinczy Street 41 relatively early in comparison with the surroundings allotments. A ground-floor building was built on the site sometime around 1840, to which widow Stahl added a first story in 1881, giving the building the form it has today. At the turn of the century, the building came into the possession of the Heuffel family, which founded a kosher meat-processing plant on the ground floor in 1914 that operated under the supervision of the Orthodox Jewish community. From 1926 until 1957, Izidor and Salamon Rebenwurzl kept the meat-processing business going in the building, and indeed they became stiff competition for Lipót Skrek, who worked nearby, at Dob Street 27. In 1957, MihályBerkovits took over the store, and after his death in 1971 his wife took his place. Then, the business, which made fresh sausage and canned meats, was taken over by Dezső Kővári, a man from Bekecs, a village in Borsod County, who had survived Auschwitz. Kővári ran the shop until 2001, at which time the possibility of the building being demolished was raised. After the meat shop was moved to a different site, Kővári moved to the Dob-Street wing of the synagogue building complex on Kazinczy Street. He died in 2005, but his coworkers and customers still treasure his memory, and a plaquewith his name on it has been mounted on the wall of the building at Dob Street 35.

The building, which had been marked for demolition, was saved by the ÓVÁS! Egyesület ('PRESERVATION! Association'), though it remained empty for years. Finally, in the autumn of 2005, the Centrum Group, which has been critical of globalization, began squatting in the building. Their goal was to create a place where the indigent and homeless would be welcome, as well as an autonomous center for underground art and culture.

After the police retook possession of the building, the local government established a homeless shelter in the former meat-processing plant. The one-story building, which had been empty for years and was in terrible condition, escaped in the last minute in the autumn of 2012.

In 2013, Kőleves ('Stone soup' – the name is a reference to the folk tale about a hungry wanderer, sometimes a soldier, who tricks townspeople into sharing their food), a restaurant which opened in 2005, moved from the corner of Kazinczy Street and Dob Street to Kazinczy Street 41. The restaurant has incorporated a number of objects from the time of the meat-processing plant into its décor, for instance a complaints book. When it moved, the restaurant changed its profile and its ars poetica. They make most of their raw ingredients and run the restaurant in an environmentally conscientious manner that is true to their founding principles. In 2009, the Kőleves Kert ('Stone Soup Garden') was opened, followed by Mika Tivadar Mulató in 2010 and Mika Kert in 2011.

See the artist: Milán Kopasz 

By Zita Mara Vadasz