We’re sorry to announce that Mrs. Esther Grunfeld OBM passed away early Friday, April 2nd. She is mourned by the Greenfield, Reuven and Simons families, including her grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

Mrs. Grunfeld has been cooking for the Sydney Jewish community for 55+ years and has been a big part of so many of our simchas, milestones and Jewish festivals. Her family has requested that anyone who has special memories of Mrs. Grunfeld and her loving cooking and customer service please share comments and photos below.  Baruch Dayan Ha’Emet. May we continue to share simchas. Mrs. Grunfeld at work making her legendary gelfilte fish balls, which were a staple for so many of us on a Jewish festival or at a kiddush for over 5 decades Mrs. Grunfeld at work making her legendary gelfilte fish balls, which were a staple for so many of us on a Jewish festival or at a kiddush for over 5 decades

28 Responses

  1. My heartfelt sympathy to all the family. Mrs Grunfeld was part of my life as long as I can remember. My Grandmother, Vera Cohen MBE adored her as did all my family. I have such fond memories of her delicious and delightful catering for the National Council of Jewish Women, our family simchas and Jewish festivals. Her legendary gefilte fish were always the best in Sydney and we always looked forward to eating them.

    Mrs Grunfeld will be remembered as a delightful, charming, heart-centred icon of the Jewish community, full of life and enthusiasm with such a gorgeous smile and will be sorely missed. I wish the family Long Life. May her memory shine bright and her legacy continue.

  2. We are so sad to hear the news of the passing of mrs Grunfeld. What an amazing woman she was. We all have the most fond memories of her. My mother Angela Epstein and her were always connected starting from when she catered Adams bar mitzvah all the way through to catering for our smachot including pesach and Rosh Hashanah. She will be missed terribly. Wishing you all a long life ❤️. Family Epstein.

  3. Such a special lady whom I have known for many years both as a caterer and a bridge player. We shared many interesting discussions at Grand Slam. Wish all the family Long Life and hope her memory is blessed.
    Wendy Baer.

  4. Our special lady mrs Grunfeld has had a special place in our hearts and our bellies for an eternity
    She was an amazing lady always warm and happy and always so giving of herself nothing was too much trouble
    She was a pillar of the community
    May she Rest In Peace

  5. We could always rely on receiving homemade food for our functions at BnaiBrith and the amounts of food were always plentyful. She will be missed for her interest in us and the way she always gave advice when asked for. It was also a pleasure to have dealings with Avi and his wife.
    I wish the family all Long Life which will be echoed by all here at Princess Gardens. Lorna Sarif

  6. Farewell to a wonderful lady BDE. According to both Mrs Grunfeld and my late parents, my Bar Mitzvah was her first real “larger scale” fct and somewhat experimental for her. It was at the NCJW – all those cooking pots of Mrs Grunfeld’s and being winter, the heaters were also on and the electrical system overloaded and tripped just before the guests were arriving – could have been a disaster, but it was Mrs Grunfeld’s trial under ‘fire’ and she passed!! Have enjoyed her gefillte fish, challamady and chourogo (excuse the spelling) ever since. Hope they cater for you in the world to come and you can finally have a rest.

  7. Dear Grunfeld Family I am so sad to hear that Mrs Esther Grunfeld has passed away she was a most wonderful person and me and my family have known her for many years and she has shared in a lot of our Simchas I am thinking of you all and wish you all the best Mary Kovari

  8. Very sad news. Mrs Grunfield catered all our simchas. She catered the brises of my four sons. She always joked ‘I did all your son’s brises’ It was very funny because everyone knew that my husband (OBM) did their bris but she loved to see everyone’s reaction and confusion. My husband often took home a ‘doggy bag’ from her when they did a bris together. No one made cabbage rolls, mushroom blintzes, crumbed button mushrooms and poppy seed strudel like her. The whole community will miss her. May her family be comforted.

  9. I remember the smell of her house on erev yom tov, the warmth and the way she called me “Mine darling.”

  10. I fondly remember her Shavouot kiddushes and being invited on Yom Tovim to eat the leftovers in advance. She played a big part in my life and will be missed. Condolences to the family

  11. Kedves kiterjedt Grunfeld család.

    Sajnálom és szomorú vagyok a veszteséged miatt. Grunfeld asszony mindig olyan boldog és adakozó ember volt ügyfeleinek. örömet okozott az embereknek régi stílusú ételeivel, boldoggá tette az adakozó természetével és a mosolyával. édes mandula Kigel a szememben 10 méter magas volt, és örömében remegett. A régi Macabean-teremben gondoskodott a Mitzva báromról és az Esküvő Miriről.

    A dél-afrikai nem volt rajta semmi kékvérű magyar császári, fenséges és királyi.

    szép emlékeket kívánok nektek, hogy az ő lelkében mélyen hordozza a szikráját

    Dear extended Grunfeld family.

    I am sorry and saddened for your loss. Mrs Grunfeld was always such a happy and giving person to her customers. she made people happy with her old style food, she made people happy with her giving nature and with her smile. her sweet almond Kigel in my eyes was 10 feet high and quivered with delight. She catered my Bar Mitzvah and Wedding with Miri at the old Macabean Hall.
    The South Africans having nothing on her she was a blue Blood Hungarian imperial, majestic and regal.

    i wish you all beautiful memories may you carry her spark deep in your living souls

    Elozer and Miri Gestetner

  12. Oh no. My heart is broken. I was very close with her and she looked after my family like a Bubby. I am so sorry to her family for their loss. Boruch Dayan HaEmes! Wishing long life, and on erev Shabbos you know she was a special woman going straight to Hashem!

  13. To the Grunfeld Family, my heartfelt sympathy to all of you. Since arriving in Sydney we were greeted with Mrs Grunfeld delicious food. Mrs Grunfeld catered on many occasions for us. She was always so accommodating and always so happy and friendly. I’m so sorry for you loss, she will always be fondly remembered.

  14. I have bought food from Mrs Grunfeld on various occasions, chagim, bar mitzvahs and Brit Milahs. She was always such a pleasure to deal with. She was very service oriented and exuded patience, grace and warmth. She will sorely be missed. I have the utmost awe and gratitude for her service to the sydney Jewish community. May her soul Rest In Peace.

  15. Dear, sweet lady. So sad to hear of your passing. You will be welcomed with open arms in Garnaden. Mrs Grunfeld catered for all our family simchas and even donated free, my daughter’s wedding cake. Although from the North Shore, she treated me as an honoured client. She welcomed me to the Eastern Suburb’s community and again catered for more family simchas, meals & festivals. Even at the last moment meals were provided. Her daughter, husband & family have carried on their mother’s tradition of respect & honouring me as a special person, as if I were family. Dear family I wish you all long life. May HaShem comfort you in your time of need. Sylvia & David Austin, Elan, Melanie & Elan Guttman, Bronwyn Rogers, Tom, Flynn & Josie.

  16. May You now RIP Mrs Grunfeld and pass on your apron . You were such a beautiful lady and you will always be remembered with much fondness.

  17. A wonderful lady. Best friend to my Aunty Eva (Nenu) and to my Mum (Joli). Always fed me with kindness and yummy gefilte fish and cakes. Will miss you lots. Esther has left a wonderful legacy and my heart will always smile when I think of her.
    Lots of love to Bobby, Judy, Debbie and rest of family.
    Love Carol

  18. To all the Greenfield, Reuven and Simons families, wishing you all long life. Mrs Grunfeld was an amazing lady that served the community for so many many years! Her memory will always be with you!

    Best wishes

    The Symonds, Schwartz and Neumann families

  19. Dear Family of Mrs Grunfeld,
    Sydney and the entire Jewish Community will keep her memory alive for many generations. Even as late as 2019, Mrs Grunfeld remembered my name and my order. Her fried gefilte fish were the best part of our Yomtovim for as much as 15 years. When my Mum went into the Monte it was Mrs Grunfeld and her family team who took Mum’s place. She was always friendly, efficient and an extraordinary worker. May her good name be for a blessing.

  20. Mrs Grunfeld was a lovely lady. Her generosity and personal touch to our simchot will be sadly missed.
    Baruch Dayan Ha Emes.
    Daniel & Kirsten Katz & Family

  21. Mrs Grunfeld was a lovely lady.
    She was old school, a rarity in these times.
    Her affordability, generosity and personal touch to all our simchot will be sadly missed.
    I would never use any other kosher caterer but Mrs Grunfeld.
    Her gefilte fish and chopped chicken livers were legendary.

    Baruch Dayan Ha Emes.
    Daniel & Kirsten Katz & Family
    4th April 2021

  22. Dear Greenfield, Rueven and Simons families,
    We were saddened to hear of Mrs Grunfeld’s passing.  When there was just too many people to cook for during the various high holidays, we always relied on some home cooked goodies from Mrs Grunfeld’s catering! She will be missed!
    Sending our deepest sympathies at this difficult time.
    Long life to all her family!
    Kind regards
    Kohn & Rodney Families
    4th April 2021

  23. Wishing the entire family arichas yomim. She was a real mentsh who exuded warmth and love. Her delicious genuine Hungarian food enriched many of my simchos… my boy’s bar mitzvahs , simchos Torah cabbage rolls, flaky hoisen bloizen and so much more. More than the food was her love that came with it. A real Hungarian Lady !

  24. B “DE Wishing the family a long life of wonderful memories to sustain you at this difficult time.
    We have enjoyed Mrs Grunfeld’s wonderful haimishe meals on so many occaions and loved each and every one of them.
    Suh a loss to our community- but never forgotten

  25. Dear Judith Deb and Family, wishing you long life. Your Mum was a wonderful lady whom I met in 1972 when she catered my engagement and wedding. My Parents, Z’L, and I became close and thought of Her very highly. Imagine my surprise when in 2005, on my trip to Israel and discovering family I didn’t know about, turned out to be close friends of hers from the old country. Judith, you knew my second cousin and her mother. Your dear Mother was thrilled to hear this. I had lovely conversations with Her and she always enquired after my family. I loved that she was always so friendly and kind and took time to ask about our lives. May she rest in piace.

  26. This is so sad. Mrs G. has been wonderful to us throughout the years and always supported us. To Deb, Avi and the entire family we send you love and wish you Long life. Mrs G. will be remembered as a delightful, charming, icon of the Jewish community, full of life and enthusiasm with such a lovely warm smile and nothing was too hard for her. She will be sorely missed. May her dear memory shine bright.

  27. Mrs Grunfeld provided the food for our son’s bar mitzvah 36 years ago. It was sent by train to Newcastle. Since then she has contributed to bar mitzvahs, bat mitzvahs, Friday night dinners, Yom tovim and numerous simchas. Let’s hope she has passed on her skills and enthusiasm to others in the family and that we can continue to turn to Grunfeld’s Catering. An era has ended. Perhaps a new one has begun.
    Wishing the family long life.
    Carolyn & Phil Foreman

  28. So sorry to hear of the death of Mrs Grunfeld. She was a lovely, warm person with a happy sociable disposition. Always with a friendly smile. She was industrious, hard working and with determination, she overcame many obstacles. Her food was wonderful. Mrs Grunfeld was inspirational, she loved her family and did all she could for them.

    May her dear soul rest in peace. She will be greatly missed.

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