Berachos 44a – Sorif
The Gemara in Berachos 44a says the following:
Chiya bar Abba said in the name of R Yochanan: Any meal without a soup ( שריף ) is not a meal.
First question: what kind of soup is meant by שריף ? I bought a case of borscht to be mekayim this mitzva with the least bother for my wife (to serve cold right out of the bottle). But I was told that the שריף must be hot.
Second question: Is it a requirement of a seudas mitzvah to have soup? I was told that there is no such mitzvah because it’s not brought down in the halacha sforim (at least the ones this person looked at). On the other hand I heard from others that at many weddings they do serve soup because of this Gemara.
Third question: In general, isn’t the Gemara the foundation for halacha? If a Gemara says to do something, why isn’t that the halacha – if there is no dispute within the Gemara and if the commentators are silent on the matter?