Jewish Delis are an iconic NYC staple! From Katz’s to Barney Greengrass, there’s no shortage of delicious options to sink your teeth into a quality pastrami sandwich, latkes or a homemade blintz.
That’s why NYC is the perfect next stop for traveling exhibit, “I’ll Have What She’s Having”: The Jewish Deli. Organized by Skirball Cultural Center, the exhibit explores the rise of Jewish delicatessens in America. It was previously shown in Los Angeles, and from November 11th, 2022 to April 2, 2023, it will be located on the first floor of the Robert H. and Claris Smith South Gallery at the New-York Historical Society.
Visitors will follow stories of Jewish immigrants (mainly from Central and Eastern Europe) on their journey of adapting to American customs and culture in relation to food. “The exhibition explores the food of immigration, the heyday of the deli in the interwar period, delis and Broadway, stories of Holocaust survivors and war refugees who worked in delis, the shifting and shrinking landscapes of delis across the country, and delis in popular culture,” shares the New-York Historical Society.
Artifacts, photography, and artworks from the New-York Historical Society will be on view, in addition to deli workers’ uniforms, video documentaries, menus, and more. People will have the opportunity to share their own deli memories with interactive activities and photo-ops.
“This show is making the argument that the Jewish deli is an American construct,” said curator Cate Thurston, as first reported by the New York Times. “It’s an American food and it’s born of immigration.”
It will later tour the Holocaust Museum in Houston and the Illinois Holocaust Museum & Education Center in Skokie through 2024.