THE SYMPATHY MEAL

The post-funeral reception is an inevitable convention for all cultures. As a rule, it takes place in the latter end of the funeral. All the relatives and friends of the deceased gather around the table to call to memory all the best things about the dead, to raise the last toast to him. Believers pray during the funeral repast. The arrangement of the funeral dinner is rather troublesome procedure, and it requires a lot of time. If it takes some weeks or even months to arrange a festive event, then there is a day or two to plan a memorial dinner. So, it is very difficult to do it according to the best price/quality ratio.

How Will the Funeral Repast Be Held?

The repast is the meal shared by family and close friends after the burial or cremation. And on the third, ninth and fortieth days, six months later and on the anniversary of the funeral there is also a memorial meal. Such kind of dinner is usually held for the closest people to the deceased. But on the day of the funeral, everyone who has come to pay a last tribute to the deceased is gathering around the same table. Since it is very difficult to arrange it at home, people prefer to go to a restaurant or rent a dining room with enough space for all people and catering (servicing and cooking).

It’s better to choose a dining hall near the final resting place. As practice shows, after the farewell, many people feel bad because of the grief, and even the long trip is too much for them.

The cost of a funeral repass in Kyiv may vary, depending on the menu, dining room, and servicing. Usually it is calculated for one person, the total cost is determined in advance according to how many people might attend. Be sure to order with plenty to spare, since the number of mourners may increase – no one should leave the funeral dinner hungry.

Of course, there cannot be any entertainment program during the funeral repass (except the rare case if this was the last request of the deceased), while the musical accompaniment is acceptable. Certainly, the music must correspond the situation and dispose to a lyrical mood.

What Type of Food and Drink Should Be Served?

The funeral meal is not the case of the gourmet cuisine. It is moment to think about the spirit, not physical pleasure. That is why, the menu is usually as simple as possible, and consists of the home-style cooking dishes. Most often, the menu includes:

  • starters – Ukrainian borsch;
  • meat dishes – meatballs, chops;
  • side dishes;
  • salads (vinegret, Olivier salad, vegetable salad);
  • sweet and not sweet pastries (rolls, pies).

If the sympathy meal falls on a religious holiday, its attributes also should be on the table (kutya for Christmas, paska for Easter). If it is a time of a fast – a part of the menu must be abstentious. But we’d like to emphasize once again that the repass is a reason to give a funeral repast for a deceased person, and not to enjoy delicious food.

It is customary to drink some alcohol for the soul of the deceased at the funeral repast. Most of all vodka is served, but you can also order some wine for women.