If you’re in the East village on a Saturday and Sunday morning and are looking for a good bagel with lox n’ schmear, look no further than Russ & Daughters. With a name like that ( thought to be the first place ever with and daughters instead of and sons in its name), how could I pass up a post about this place? One of the most historical culinary landmarks of the city, Russ & Daughters has remained planted on the same location on Houston for nearly 100 years.
Although the shop is about 1/5 the size and selection of the Upper West Side appetizing destination, Zabar’s, Russ & Daughter holds its own in the Lower East Side. The store boasts shelves and display cases full of everything from an array of smoked salmon, caviar and roe, homemade bagels, and gefilte fish to delicious chocolates, pastries, and coffee. They also have a menu of sandwiches with playful New York-ified Yiddish names, like the “Super Heebster,” the “Meshugge,” and the “Oy Vey Schmear.” All of the sandwiches looked delicious, but this morning Anna and I were going with the classic: Norwegian smoked salmon on a homemade bagel with schmear.
Russ & Daughter’s is simply wonderful. It’s not only the food and appetizing that draw so many to this place, but also the neighborhoody atmosphere and great service. Our sandwiches were made with the utmost care. The bagels were piled high with generous portions of both cream cheese and thinly sliced smoked salmon. After oogling at the chocolate display case, we walked over to a park on 1st Avenue and chowed down. Boy, were we pleased. Combined with Russ & Daughter’s freshly squeezed orange juice and a beautiful spring morning, this sandwich was a great start to a day full of final papers, final presentations, and general finals stress. I wish I could eat it all over again. Maybe tomorrow morning.