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Nov 10, 2013 06:16 PM

Zabars-2nd consecutive mediocre nova outing (!)

A bit dryer, a bit less flavor-full. (No, it's not just that I'm aging, the family agrees). Anyone else noticing a shift? I hope I'm wrong-been trecking down there for the stuff for 50 years now.

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    1. re: fourunder

      Nope. And funny you linked to an item about Acme, because I saw some items in the case while he was cutting labeled as coming from Wallkill. Anyway, all I can say is if Zabars ever loses it, I leave NY (or convert, or kill myself).

      1. re: addictedtolunch

        The next point then is this....if you do like the Acme Product, simply ask for it. The only other major smoked fish purveyor I can think of in the metro area is M. Slavin...but I do not recall ever hearing Zabars carrying it.

        1. re: fourunder

          No, if you ever took the drive southbound on 17 above Liberty there's a big billboard for the Wallkill purveyor. But it never dawned on me that Zabars, after all these years, would ever waver in the quality of what it sold.

          1. re: addictedtolunch

            So it's your contention that the Wallkill purveyor is the exclusive or dominant option for smoked salmon at Zabars...the company doesn't even mention they sell to Zabars like they do with others....who I might add, doubt they would carry it in there stores if they did not think the quality was any good.


            1. re: fourunder

              Didn't say "dominant" at all, just that the Wallkill label was on a couple of pieces in the case. Maybe they keep it as a reserve. Hey, nobody has been a bigger booster of Zabars on these boards than I, but the last two outings were sub-par. Always preferred Zabars to R & D, but if they violate the three strike rule...

              1. re: addictedtolunch

                Maybe they keep it as a reserve. ..

                Or maybe it's just an option. Your implication is they substitute with a sub par product from Wallkill. If you don't like the Catsmo Artisan Smokehouse, then ask for the Acme. It's widely known Acme is the main supplier for Smoke Fish for both Zabars and R & D. Catsmo offers Smoked Salmon, but it does not show Nova Style Lox as one of its offerings.


      2. re: fourunder

        'very easy to miss the boat' Groan---very punny!

      3. We've been supplying our weekly Sunday breakfasts from Zabar's (& Fairway) for quite some time. The dryness can change from week to week, for all sorts of reasons including weather conditions (so we've been told). Pardon me for possibly stating the obvious, but I suggest first looking for the piece of salmon with the most fat (I think Zabar's sells 3-4 styles). Ask to taste a piece before deciding, keeping in mind that it will always be drier (for us, too dry) if it's from a new slab. We always look for an already-started slab of smoked salmon, as it will be moister "inside".

        3 Replies
        1. re: boredough

          Exactly, the customer has a choice of which specific piece he would like his purchase from....or a choice of other options available.

          1. re: boredough

            I've had from a new slab before (hey, when your number is called and things are busy the guy you get may only have a new slab to work from while others are cutting too), but they usually trim off enough in preparation to get to the moist area. This looked like a new-ish slab, true, but that's no excuse.

            1. re: addictedtolunch

              I agree that sometimes you don't have a choice and you're stuck with a new slab, especially if you insist on a specific type of smoked salmon. I think it's the nature of the beast that the top layers will be drier than the interior, at Zabar's or anywhere. But since there are a few Nova preparations, you might get a moister (fattier) option if you try a different one than you usually order. I'm just suggesting you look for the fattiest selection & ask for a taste - whether it's a started slab or not - and not feel obligated to buy something you find too dry. In any case I wish you luck next time you make the trip to Zabar's.

          2. My husband and I agree with you.