derryX promotes: CGOH’s Annual Jewish Food Festival – Reflections

I told you last week that I encouraged you to attend this event which occurred Sunday April 3 from Noon to 4pm at the Congregation Gates of Heaven in Schenectady.

Well I went, and I ran a bunch of people in no particular order: Daniel B. who was kind enough to invite me to this event, Leah the Nosher who makes a Challah bread that I can classify as no less than “mean” (in a great way), Albany Jane and Husbear, and WendyTrue54, who, it turns out, graduated from the same high school in Orange County as I. Also present were Cassie and my good buddy, Rory, who was looking to run the gamut of Jewish cuisine.

I enjoyed many things. Rory enjoyed many more. There was so much to take in, but I managed to take a few pictures with my snazzy new HTC Thunderbolt 4G.

Challah bread made by Leah the Nosher
Leah the Nosher posing with her Challah bread
Greek Cheese courtesy of the Honest Weight Food Co-op
Sliced lox, amazing, truly amazing
Cookie table
Live music
Ridiculously good pastrami

Leah and Daniel were right at the entrance when you arrive, and their table was a definite high point. Daniel had my favorite butter from Italy and an amazing butter I’ve never had before from France. I’m sure he’s gonna talk your ears off on his blog about the butter.

Leah made so much bread. With the amount of people who were there, you’d imagine she would have run out, but, after an hour and a half of constant eating, when I left, she still had that basket almost full.

There was a guy slicing pastrami that I joked around with for wearing a Brooklyn Dodgers cap. Turns out he’s from the city, and he gave me a talk about where the pastrami comes from. Great stuff. They’re located in the Price Chopper in Slingerlands.

The people giving out food were very nice and were eager to share their culinary secrets and explain what they had, which was great. The attendees were poorly mannered; people would literally stick their hands in your face just to get to a table. I just stood back, enjoyed my bites of food and didn’t let it bother me.

All in all, it was a great event. I got to try things that I would otherwise be reluctant to spend money on. Rory got to try even more stuff, like gefilte fish, which I’d never try. The best part was that with two notable exceptions, a lady at a Bath Fitters booth who nicely backed off when I told her I rented my apartment and the pickle people who were there selling jars of their pickles, there was no monetary exchange at each table. This led to a laid back environment where you didn’t have to feel uncomfortable to take a sample.

I’ll definitely attend this event in the future. Great stuff.


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