This program is generously sponsored by the Daniel & Anne Katzman Memorial Fund.
The closing of the Cafe Edison, the Broadway restaurant favored by theater people and loyal Broadway fans, is not just a story about another famous show business haunt shutting its doors, but is also the fading away of American-Jewish cuisine and of a piece of an America past. Located in the Hotel Edison on West 47th Street, Cafe Edison has been a culinary staple in NYC’s Theater District for the past 32 years. When the original owners of the cafe and hotel (both Holocaust survivors) made a pact to keep Cafe Edison open as long as the family was willing to run it, their handshake meant their word. Now, with the value of Times Square real estate booming, the current owners of Hotel Edison are trading in the beloved neighborhood cafe for an upscale, five-star restaurant.
USA, 2015, English, 25 minutes
THE STURGEON QUEENS
Four generations of a New York Jewish family created Russ and Daughters, a Lower East Side lox and herring emporium that survives and thrives. Coinciding with the 100th anniversary of the store, this documentary features an extensive interview with two of the original daughters for whom the store was named, now 100 and 92 years old, and interviews with prominent enthusiasts of the store including Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, New Yorker writer Calvin Trillin, actor Maggie Gyllenhaal, chef Mario Batali and 60 Minutes correspondent Morley Safer. The university-educated fourth-generation Russes tell everything from how they chose to continue the family business, but demonstrate how to thin-slice smoked fish and what “appetizing” means in New York – one of New York City’s most unique food traditions.
USA, 2014, English, 52 minutes