Deli-cious exhibit opens in NYC
From pastrami to lox, and latkes to borsht, the New-York Historical Society is opening an exhibition that is all things Delicatessen.
“I’ll Have What She’s Having”: The Jewish Deli, is the story of how the Deli became an American classic.
Named after the famous scene in the movie When Harry Met Sally, the exhibit takes you from Deli food’s Jewish immigrant roots, to the modern deli revival.
Jake Dell, 5th generation owner of the famed Katz’s Delicatessen in New York’s Lower East Side was on hand to see the exhibition open.
“When we see visitors not just from around the world but from around, you know, any parts of the city or people who’ve never been to us before. Part of what we do is teach the history of delicatessen. And I think this place does a great job of also teaching that history. And I it’s more than just a sandwich. It’s an experience,” said Dell.
The exhibition explores American delis Jewish roots and how eastern european Jewish traditions became everyday norms for New Yorkers.
“It’s a Jewish food tradition, but that doesn’t mean it’s meant by Jewish people for Jewish people it’s a very much for everyone. It’s we’re New Yorkers, right? And we’re all New Yorkers. At the end of the day. First and foremost, you got to eat. Right? And so it doesn’t matter who you are, where you come from, what you do. Everyone can bond over a pastrami sandwich,” said Dell.
“Delis are New York,” said Marilyn Kushner of the New York Historical Society.
While trends and economics have closed some of New York’s most famous delis, old stalwarts like Katz’s and 2nd Ave are going as strong as ever, and Kushner said she expects many people will leave the exhibit and go straight to a Deli.
The exhibition is on view at New-York Historical from November 11, 2022 – April 2, 2023,