Posted on | December 15, 2011 | 2 Comments
My friend Peter Shelsky opened a smoked fish store in June of this year. He took a page out of the playbooks of both Russ & Daughters and Zabar’s and set up his appetizing shop in the Carroll Gardens section of Brooklyn. This gave people on this side of the river a place to buy smoked fish & other Jewish dishes without having to travel into Manhattan. The store’s motto is “no more schlepping…” & it makes total sense.
I’ve known Pete for a few years & had the pleasure of eating at his house & I know what he has a successful catering & cooking lesson business. With this in mind, I knew that this new venture would succeed, but it took an invitation to a tasting night last month to get me out to the shop. It’s a pretty small space, yet totally functional & a dozen or so of us gathered around 6pm on a Monday to eat as much as we could.
Needless to say, smoked fish featured heavily on the menu. We had salmon wrapped asparagus, smoked sturgeon (amazing!), herring & pickled vegetables. With each offering, Peter described the fish, choice of cream cheese & the bread. I was particularly blown away by the sturgeon & luckily for
us me the numbers were low, so I helped myself liberally.
Towards the second half of the tasting, we moved on to Smoked Salmon. There was Gaspe, Irish Double Cured & Scottish Salmon. I had to go with the Scottish Salmon which was paired with Ben’s cream cheese. Growing up, I’d always have Philadelphia, but this stuff makes everything taste better. I was a happy man.
There are plenty of other items on offer: soups, bread, roll mops & canned goods. They also serve bagels with various cream cheeses & toppings. Specialty sandwiches are also on offer that seem to defy logic but sound amazingly good.
The Peter Shelksy: Gaspe Nova, Sable, Pickled Herring with Cream Sauce & Onion served on a bagel or bialy. What’s not to love?
Shelsky’s Smoked Fish: 251 Smith Street