Sunday, April 29, 2007

Another Dubrow's review

I'm going to have to get to the library soon and check out some of the articles I downloaded from the New York Times archives in microfiche form. There seems to be a problem with some of the images, so I can't upload them all. I'm not sure if it's a copyright issue or a quality issue. But meanwhile, I found another review of Dubrow's, this one by Mimi Sheraton:

"Dubrow's Cafeteria, 515 Seventh Avenue near 38th Street (221-6777), is a classic, with larger-than-life dairy dishes, delicatessen sandwiches and steam-table food more or less Jewish - East European in style. Breakfast, lunch, and dinner prices are moderate. The best bets are the egg dishes, cold plates, sandwiches, and the vegetables with pot cheese and sour cream. Closed Sunday." (New York Times, August 8, 1980)

Monday, April 23, 2007

King's Highway ticket

Photo Hosted at Buzznet

This is another photo by the always amazing Marcia Bricker.

She writes:
"You took a ticket when you entered the restaurant on Kings Highway. There was a great ticket machine with a guy that handed you the ticket. Whenever you went up to the counter they punched the ticket with the amount you spent. If they punched $1.25 for a sandwich and later you went back for coffee, 25 cents and a danish, 60 cents - they
added on those amounts. Then Roz at the door added up your punches for your total bill. The maximum on this ticket was 3.40. If you used that up, rare in those days, you went and got a second ticket - I don't remember how they knew you had two tickets. Katz's deli uses a similar system - the last time I was there was last year."

Also, she is currently in conversation with some contacts she has about the possiblity of making a documentary about Dubrow's. How cool would that be? I am hoping this will spur me on to try and track down a couple relatives who knew Dubrow's well but with whom I am not regularly in touch, so I can do some more oral history.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Restaurant review

Found this in the Village Voice's NYC Guide:

"Diamond Dairy Restaurant, 4 W 47th St, New York, NY 10036, West Side
Phone: (212) 719-2694, Price: $
Jewish, 42nd to 59th, Restaurants - General, Restaurants

Dramatically poised on a balcony above the National Jewelers Exchange, this old-fashioned Ashkenazic Jewish dairy restaurant features the usual dishes including blintzes, puddings, and rivers of sour cream. Baked fish is a particular specialty, but even better is cholent, a garlicky bean stew. All hail the orange kugel floating on top! Enjoy watching the jewelry transactions down below as you dine, and go as soon as possible, before this New York institution goes the way of Dubrow's and Hammer's."

It sounds like it's a throwback to Dubrow's. I'll have to check it out next time I'm in NYC.

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Dubrow family

This is a photo of the family of Benjamin Dubrow. The smallest child is Ruthie Dubow, which dates this photo to just a year or two after her birth. She is sitting on Benjamin's lap, and beside them is Sylvia, the next youngest. Sylvia went on to marry Irving Kaplan, my grandfather and an eventual manager and part owner of Dubrow's. Beside her is Rose Dubrow, Benjamin's wife. In the back row we have Lila, who would become the mother of Joe and Robert, who have both made appearances on this blog in comments and in the oral history I took last Passover. Beside Lila is George, Benjamin's only son. He was a manager of Dubrow's until his tragic early death, and also the father of Irwin Dubrow, who was also a manager of Dubrow's. Finally, the woman beside George is Minnie, who went on to marry Max Tobin. Both Max Tobin and his son, Paul Tobin, went on to be managers of Dubrow's.

Sunday, April 01, 2007

Seymour Gruber

Happy Pesach to everyone! I'm back down in Miami with my family, and got this little story from my cousin Steven Gruber. He recalled that his father, Seymour Gruber, was working as a young pediatrician in Brooklyn, and would make a lot of house calls. Of course, after inviting him into their homes, they would invariably want to feed him, and not wanting to be rude...he'd accept. They would bring him out some cakes, and then silverware with which to eat it...which was often Dubrow's silverware, pilfered from the restaurants...

Seymour also met his wife, Ruthie, through Dubrow's. Or rather, through Dubson's, which was a more upscale, traditional restaurant the family started for a short run. Apparently Seymour would come in a lot, and Irving Kaplan, my grandfather, told him one day he had to meet his sister-in-law. He introduced them, and they wound up getting married. According to Steven, Irving would tell people he "fell in love with Seymour first" when describing Seymour and Ruthies's relatationship.