Meet The Team

Our team knows that choosing the right caterer is an integral part of any successful event. At Medina Cuisine, our role is to help every client feel comfortable with their menu choices and theme. Our first goal however is to let each client know that their event is unique and we will do our best to exceed expectations every time.


Michael M. Medina, President & CEO
Medina Cuisine Caterers & The Kosher Kitchen Catering Co.
michael@medinacuisine.com or michael@thekosherkitchen.com

Michael heads-up the fastest-growing kosher catering company in the metropolitan Washington, DC area. Having catered to the Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives, Ambassadors to France, India, Colombia and Israel, as well as foreign leaders, including Prime Minister Netanyahu of Israel, Michael has gained extensive experience in the food and events industry. 

Recently, Michael and his team of professional chefs and event staff have catered the 'welcome back' event for released Cuban prisoner, Alan Gross. The event boasted over 500 guests from around the community. Michael's team also catered at the Strathmore Music Center boasting over 1500 guests, during a local non-profit organization's annual gala.

Michael is a former volunteer EMT and tries to be active in the local Jewish community.  He sits on the Board of Directors of Friends of the IDF (FIDF mid-Atlantic), Israel Bonds Young Professionals Committee (DC chapter), George Mason University's Hillel and has chaired the Israel Advocacy Committee.

Michael lives in a suburb of Washington, DC with his wife and daughter.


Karen P. Barall, Director of Client Services
Medina Cuisine Caterers & The Kosher Kitchen Catering Co.
karen@thekosherkitchen.com

Karen joins our team with an extensive background in community relations as well as grassroots advocacy and has worked with multiple non-profit organizations. In those roles, Karen executed numerous events which have given her the necessary experience to help produce various banquets for corporate clients and organizations as well as special events for private clients. As an active member of the Jewish community in the Greater Washington Area, Karen enjoys working with people and thrives at catering to individual clients’ wants. She brings new leadership skills as our Director of Client Services. Karen lives in Potomac, MD with her husband and two children.


Merryl Shaffir, Account Manager
Medina Cuisine Caterers & The Kosher Kitchen Catering Co.
merryl@thekosherkitchen.com

Merryl was raised in Atlanta, Georgia and comes to us with a legacy of Southern hospitality and grace.  Before joining, she has worked in the kosher catering industry for eleven years.  Merryl has a lifelong career in sales and marketing and will handle every detail of your event with style and efficiency - giving it the attention it deserves. She currently resides in Silver Spring, MD with her husband.


Avi Harouch, Executive Chef
Medina Cuisine Caterers & The Kosher Kitchen Catering Co.

Trained in nouvelle cuisine and coming from Moroccan and Israeli origins, Chef Avi has over 30 years of experience creating international savory dishes, including a degree from the Culinary Institute of America (CIA) in California. With creative leadership rolls at high-end caterers and hotels in the DC metro area, Chef Avi has experience designing food ideas that are succulent, unique and visually pleasing. He has also owned and operated restaurants and food markets in California. Chef Avi lives in Washington, DC.