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Venerable Brookline deli closing for good

The owners of Rubin's Kosher Restaurant on Harvard Street in Brookline announced tonight that they will be closing forever Friday afternoon.

Erica and Allen Gellerman did not say why they are suddenly closing one of the Boston area's few kosher restaurants, but said it was with "a heavy heart."

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No authentic New York bagels available anywhere around Boston!... not even at the new Mamaleh's Delicatessen
http://www.yelp.com/biz/mamalehs-cambridge-2?sort_by=date_desc

That crunchy exterior surface of a New York, Brooklyn, Queens, Bronx bagel.

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The closest you're gonna get to a NY bagel here is probably Rosenfeld's in Newton:

https://www.yelp.com/biz/rosenfeld-bagel-company-newton-center

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Honestly. I know New Yorkers think their bagels (and even more mysteriously their pizza) is the shit, but really? If you want an "authentic New York bagel" go to New York. If you are in Boston, go to Bagelsaurus, Exodus, Kupels, or my new personal favorite, Levend at the public market and just eat a f'ing bagel already without the obligatory sobbing about how much better they are in New York.

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To add to what Sally said, "New York" doesn't really mean much any more, where bagels are concerned. It's like a lot of types of food: it takes work, and most of the American public has demonstrated over and over that they're willing to eat crap. When Burger King sells you something they call a croissant, really, there isn't much hope for bagels, even in New York.

(thanks for the Levend tip, btw)

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bagel experience--there are different and legit preferences in crust, chewiness, density, etc. And I really do think we've got a range of excellent bagel options here now. But Levend are a bit denser, with a crisp, dark crust (I am not a huge fan of toasting bagels and these really don't need it) and they are my reigning favorite.

The times I've been to Absolute Bagel on the UWS, I've been interested to note that everyone running the place--front and back--appeared to be either Asian or Central American. Not surprising, but it does remind you that the NYC that spawned the great Jewish and Eastern European delis, bagelries, etc has moved on--surely it exists still in farther flung pockets of the city, but like everything it's migrated and transformed. So the whole idea of some "authentic" NYC bagel is a little dubious.

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Absolute Bagel is great - been there many times.

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NYC bagel implicitly means NYC style. Should I also go to Greece for Greek pizza?

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There's a semi-reasonable amount of evidence that NYC's astoundingly great water is heavily responsible for the overall quality of their dough products, so no, you aren't going to get NYC style in a place that has different water unless you have them shipped in. Deal with it or go home, yankee

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That might be the case about bagels procured from NYC proper and maybe areas north that use the same water. For everyone else in the NYC area (e.g., Long Island), the argument falls apart because the water sources are profoundly different. I have commented on this before.

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That would be a great argument if Boston's water hadn't been rated the best in the country.

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Well... NYC's water IS great.

The specific angle with respect to the quality of the bagels there is pH.

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But your best bet in Boston these days is Better Bagel, which is carried by a few places (7ate9, Saltie Girl, occasionally at Coppa, various popups -- I tried my first one at a La Brasa brunch), and with luck will get its own brick-and-mortar soon. They are the real deal.

It always surprised me that Brookline and Newton couldn't support a decent Jewish deli. The corned beef at Michael's is respectable, but the town is a desert otherwise (don't talk to me about Rubin's, RIP, or shudder, Zaftig's, or any place that thinks Boar's Head is doing the job).

Mamaleh's is terrific, and while not a proper Jewish deli, Moody's is the shit when it comes to cured meats: great house-made pastrami and corned beef, for starters. But we're pretty thin on the ground otherwise, and the reasons are economic: it's expensive to do proper deli, which is why so many of the traditional ones in places like New York are disappearing. Check out the documentary Deli Man if you get a chance.

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Barry's Village Deli in the Waban section of Newton is a great deli.

Then Gordon & Alperin on Comm Ave in Newton Centre is a genuine kosher butcher that also cooks his own cold cuts, which are fantastic.

The quality of these places is amazing, particularly Gordon's roast beef but the high prices and odd hours and limited production make them a rarity.

Cross town in the Lake, you can get great sausage at Depasquale's cheap.

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to get to Barry's for ages.

(I'm a fan of DePasquale's, too, but it's Italian.)

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I'm pretty sure Barry's isn't kosher, so it won't help many of the people who went to Rubin's for that reason.

Very sad day.

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not being able to buy a $20 sandwich, oh poor you!

go to Inna’s Kitchen in Newton if you want Kosher.

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Inna's uses kosher ingredients. But they don't have separate utensils for meat and dairy, and they have no supervision.

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DePasquale's is Italian? They told me the pork sausage was Kosher.

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product lineup of sweet Italian sausage, hot Italian sausage, those very magenta "Chinese" sausages, garlic & cheese sausages, breakfast sausages, and New England style marinated steak tips doesn't sound like any Jewish producer I've ever heard of. Good to know the Italian sausages are kosher, but a little surprising given that they make garlic & cheese sausages.

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Amazon, I'm sure, can ship you your New York bagels if you are homesick, ZAK.

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Katz's in Chelsea is as close to a NY bagel as you're going to get here that isn't hipster infused or artisan.

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What about Kupel's in Brookline?

I agree with the commenter about Better Bagels. They are awesome. Check their Facebook page for pop-ups too.

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but they went sharply downhill in my estimation sometime in the oughts, I believe after an ownership change. They also had a very unsettling health-department citation a few years ago.

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I remember wondering when poppy seeds learnt to fly . . . then I realized they weren't poppy seeds.

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n/t

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Did you happen to keep a copy that you can post here, Adam?

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Sorry about that. The link should work now (what was odd was the link worked fine for me on my phone, but, as you found, not anywhere else).

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NOOOOOO. NOOOOOOO. NOOOOOOOOOOOOOO.

I didn't even have a chance to have one last dish of kischke with gravy. I am bereft.

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Where Brookline Avenue and Boylston Street meet, in what eventually became a Subway and which later became the construction site for the area's latest luxotower. Was open late into the night - where else could you get stuffed derma at 2 a.m.? But does anybody remember its name?

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I remember it well...I think.

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But that was in Kenmore Square, back in Mr. Butch days.

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Open sorta late too. One of the managers there was a hoot.

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Thanks! Now I can devote my few remaining brain cells to other things :-).

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Back around 1985 or so, Henny Youngman played a show there. I was dying to go, but didn't. The end.

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Got served a bowl of rancid chili there once, ick.

I do fondly remember Charlie's, though, a favorite late-night stop after many a punk-rock show at The Rat, more of a cafeteria than a deli: I drunkenly loved their steam-table ratatouille.

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And what was that place on the corner of Harvard & Mass Ave in Allston, open all night? Important post-Bunratty's beer absorption site.

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That was a D'Angelo. I shudder to think that you'd recall a Papa Gino's as a Domino's.

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