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Aug 16, 2011 09:59 AM

Kosher bakery in NYC

I am invited to a dinner this Friday to a strickly kosher household. I'd like to bring some dessert but I don't know anything about Kosher bakeries in NYC. Any good one in midtown east or upper westside? I usually love to bring a box of assorted French macarons from bakeries like Bouchon but I guess this is no no, right?

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  1. You will need to find not just kosher but also pareve (neither meat nor milk). I would suggest you go to a a kosher market and buy packaged baked goods that say pareve. However, i'd also suggest that you just bring flowers and kosher wine.

    2 Replies
    1. re: DeisCane

      wow, sounds very complicated...ok, i will just bring some flowers.

      1. re: Monica

        If you bring flowers, make sure to bring them over before the beginning of the Sabbath, as your hosts won't put them in water once the Sabbath starts.

    2. Go to Seasons on the upper west side, 661 Amsterdam between 92nd and 93rd. They're a general kosher supermarket, but have some great baked goods. I'm a fan of the house baked cakes and cookies, but they also carry some packaged goods from other bakeries if you prefer.

      1. Definitely a no-no - thanks for checking!

        My guess is that they're serving a meat meal, meaning any baked goods would need to be pareve (ie containing neither meat nor dairy products). Probably most pareve baked goods wouldn't live up to your standards; although there are some foods like chiffon cakes that are inherently pareve, most baked goods are very dependent on butter. Perhaps you'd be best off bringing a good assortment of summer fruit for dessert instead? Or flowers (bring them by before Shabbos)?

        1. Fairway has fabulous desserts, freshly baked. They are marked dairy and parve. Best to bring parve unless you know that your friends are dedicated vegetarians.

          26 Replies
          1. re: AdinaA

            I was always taught that unless you were asked to contribute food, you should not bring food. This week's Curb hit on that exact theme.

            1. re: DeisCane


              I'l just echo what everyone else here is saying. If you feel you absolutly have to walk in with something, bring flowers...but only if you know you can be there by 7:15.

              My personal suggestions is to go with a kosher wine, I am really loving the Reds from Barkan right now. If you let this board know the general are where you live or work I am sure we can suggest a good wine store for you to go to.

              Have fun this Shabbos.

              1. re: vallevin

                Haha, so no wine will do.

                I work in midtown east, NYC and live in Northern NJ...suggest me a bottle or two.

                I know the host is a big wine person...

                1. re: Monica

                  I don't want to add to the confusion, but the wine should be Mevushal. It will be stated on the label. Good luck!

                  1. re: Monica

                    Monica...if you are in striking distance of Queen Anne Liquors in Teaneck, the Shoprite in Paramus, or the big store in River Edge go I said..and Barkan Red is tasting yummy to me these days. ...

                    Hmm...okay....which Ortho community is easier to get to for you? West Orange, Passaic or Teaneck?

                    1. re: vallevin

                      I live close to Teaneck. I once tasted really good jelly donuts from a kosher bakery called Butterflake. I am not sure if they only sell those during passover..or was it a different holiday?
                      Anyway, maybe i can do something like that. The dinner is at upper westside.

                      1. re: Monica

                        Chanukah. Definitely *NOT* Passover!

                        1. re: Monica

                          Monica, if you were planning on buying dessert right before dinner, please be aware that most kosher stores will close early on Friday. Also, your guests would prefer that you buy the food/flowers before sunset on Friday(yes another crazy Jew rule).

                          1. re: avitrek

                            I was thinking maybe go there on thursday night....hopefully they will still be fresh the next day.

                            The host has a maid..even if we brought flowers, if she is not jewish, i assume she will take care of them? lol

                            1. re: Monica

                     are your options in and around Teaneck for wine:

                              My Favorite: Queen Anne Liquors...As for Jerry, tell him how much you want to spend and ask for mevushal and he will serve you well (Queen Anne Road & Degraw)
                              Wine Store (not sure of name) on the corner of Queen Anne and West Englewood - all products in the store are kosher
                              Shoppers Vineyard in River Edge
                              Shoprite Wine in the Shoprite in Paramus
                              There are plenty more (like the shopping center opposite the Bergenfield Pathmark, another Store on Cedar Lane).

                              1. re: vallevin

                                I live in Tenafly. I guess that store in Bergenfield is even closer. I think I know which one you are talking about. I will check them out..I'd always wanted to check that place out..including the vege/fruit market.

                                1. re: Monica

                                  2 more places (closer) to suggest.... Shoprite in Englwwood has a liquor shop & there is a wine store near Hamsa in Tenafly... I know because I bought a bottle of white something there once. That place may not have such a big collection, but I am guessing it's easier to get to.

                                  (Thank you google maps)
                                  ▼Wine Ventures
                                  7 Washington Avenue
                                  Tenafly, NJ 07670-2027

                                  1. re: vallevin

                           are awsome!
                                    I go to both of these places all the time but I never paid attention to their kosher section if there is one.

                                    1. re: Monica

                                      Aw are welcome...please go have a fantastic time. Is this your "first" Shabbos meal?

                                      1. re: vallevin

                                        Actually no...but none of them were as strict as this family.

                              2. re: Monica

                                Thursday night is perfect. The stores will be open late and well stocked. The cakes will still be fine on Friday night. I often buy baked goods on Thursday night and serve them Friday night or Saturday.

                    2. re: DeisCane

                      @ DeisCain: I don't know what "Curb" is, but it has been my experience that in the frum (religious) community, very few hosts are offended if a guest brings a gift of wine or a dessert. Hostess gifts are expected, and if you really want to follow the general etiquette, you can say that the hosts don't have to serve what you bring, but a gift IS generally appropriate.

                      I think that too many people here are confusing the original poster, perhaps even making her think that Orthodox Jews are crazy:
                      "Cake? OK, but only if it's parve, whatever that is; flowers, OK, but only before a certain time, huh?; wine, OK but must be mevushal, whatever that is? What's with these crazy Jews, anyway?"

                      Yes, for those of us who keep these rules, it's second nature, but for the outsider, let's not make them crazy, and let's not make them think we are, either. Sometimes an Orthodox family invites non-Orthodox friends to show them the beauty of a shabbat meal, and I'm sure most any gift will be received with appreciation.

                      So, my advice to the original poster is: if you want to bring a dessert (as it seems that's what you do with non-kosher hosts, based on your macaron comment), then do so. Go to one of the kosher stores on the upper west side, since you mentioned that as a good place for you. Go to Seasons and find some cake or cookies or something. It might not be up to your usual standards, but it's the thought that counts. Parve would be best, because if it's a meat meal, your hosts will not be able to serve a dessert with any milk in it, but a parve dessert should not be difficult to find in a place like Seasons. Ask anyone in the store if you have trouble; I'm sure anyone would be able to help you.

                      1. re: queenscook

                        Wine is different than food. Curb is Curb Your Enthusiasm, a popular comedy series on HBO.

                        From the Table Manners section of this website:

                        "Bringing an extra dish to someone else’s dinner is like bringing an extra person: Your guest should always ask first. You’ve put careful thought into the menu and the social mix, and a surprise addition could clash with either one. Plus, it can feel a little insulting, as if the guest is worried that what you’ve provided won’t be sufficient."

                        Oh, and btw, calling it a "hostess" gift is BS.

                        1. re: DeisCane

                          Never seen Curb Your Enthusiasm, so I can't comment on it, but I presume not many look to it as an etiquette guide (though I know it's produced by the same person responsible for Seinfeld, where there was a classic episode that revolved around buying both cake and wine as hostess gifts).

                          As for the Table Manners column, I've rarely seen anything there where I agreed with Helen or Helena or whatever her name is, and quite a few of the comments there often question where she gets her ideas, because they are usually so opposite of what the normal person thinks.

                          And once again, I would emphasize that the etiquette rules of the religious community and the "secular" world are often quite different. Almost no one who has ever come to my home for shabbat has not brought a gift, and close to 100% of the time, it's an edible/drinkable one. And I bring an edible gift to my hosts a similar percentage of the time, and no one has ever looked even the slightest bit annoyed.

                          Remember, not every shabbos meal is treated the same as a gourmet dinner party where the host/ess has been planning and cooking for days or weeks, as is more often the case with secular dinner parties. Orthodox Jews do this every week, and menus tend to be a bit more relaxed and less precise than the fancy dinner parties that the Table Manners' author is speaking of. The so-called "surprise addition" of an extra cake or cookies is not like bringing an extra pot roast where the meal is going to have an Indian theme.

                          I'd love to hear from those who read this board, especially those who host friends for shabbat meals, if they really, deep down, feel insulted by guests who bring wine or dessert. I just cannot imagine it is true; it's too much a part of the standard shabbat experience for me to believe that it's just something hosts put up with, while really, deep down, they feel that the guest feels "what you've provided won't be sufficient" or annoyed that the item brought will clash with what they are serving.

                          1. re: queenscook

                            I love it when people offer to make things, and have never had someone bring a surprise side dish. If we haven' t discussed it beforehand, guests who bring something (most people, but not all) tend to bring wine, candy, other junk food (which I don't particularly want - I'd rather you brought nothing than a package of wafers), or occasionally homemade baked goods. I do sometimes do relatively elaborately themed meals, but desserts are always welcome, and I think that people do understand that you may or may not serve the wine they bring.

                            1. re: GilaB

                              I also hate those wafers, but I still accept them graciously. If I don't serve them, I donate them the next time there's a food drive (post-Purim and Thanksgiving are good bets).

                              Not all of my guests are as food-aware ("foodie," if you will), as others, and it's a gesture on their part. How anyone can look down on that is just beyond me. Not referring to you, Gila, but others, including anyone who would turn their nose up at any gift brought with good intentions.

                              1. re: queenscook

                                Of course one accepts the wafers graciously! I see-saw in between plating them as nicely as possible, only to watch nobody eat them (and then I'm stuck with a package of wafers we'll snack on even without enjoying them much), or not serving them (such that we can donate them later) and worrying that the guests feel their gift is unappreciated.

                                1. re: GilaB

                                  Well, you can always pull the "OH NO . . . I forgot to put out the wafers you brought" thing, as you are ready to bentch or they are leaving, or whatever. (I'm not saying that I've ever done this, of course!)

                                  1. re: queenscook

                                    Gee thanks. I'll have to remember this the next time I hear that from a host.... :-)

                                    (I prefer to think that they honestly forgot, especially in the case of desserts that go into the freezer as soon as I present them, and are therefore easily forgotten.)

                        2. re: queenscook

                          "I think that too many people here are confusing the original poster, perhaps even making her think that Orthodox Jews are crazy:
                          "Cake? OK, but only if it's parve, whatever that is; flowers, OK, but only before a certain time, huh?; wine, OK but must be mevushal, whatever that is? What's with these crazy Jews, anyway?""

                          Hahahaha..thanks for the laugh.

                    3. Go to My Most Favorite Dessert Company on 72nd between West End Avenue and Broadway. They have excellent desserts which will be most appropriate.

                      6 Replies
                      1. re: SRG

                        SRG--aren't most of their things dairy? Maybe even all?

                        1. re: DeisCane

                          They have pareve and dairy and are well labeled. Best in town.

                          1. re: SRG

                            What do you recommend from there?

                            1. re: Monica

                              We had a fruit tart recently, received as a gift, and it was outstanding.

                              1. re: SRG

                                fruit tart with no cream? I need to be convinced..haha