Sunday, June 15, 2014

Fishy business

Russ & Daughters Appetizing has been on Houston between First and Allen since 1914, selling the best quality smoked fish on the planet.

On a Sunday morning at 9:00 am, it was already packed when I got there but I took a number and waited patiently along with everyone else.

It's good to have the time to look at everything in the deli case, anyway. There's smoked trout, sturgeon, sable and nearly a dozen variations on salmon, from hot kippered to cured and dilly gravlax. They have several varieties of caviar, worth their weight in gold.

Although I've never had pickled herring I was almost tempted by the New Catch Holland herring, which comes in seasonally, and is here in time for Father's Day - but alas, I'm by myself without a kitchen, so I had to pass. It wouldn't be good to keep pickled herring in my hotel room.

No, instead I chose one of their sandwiches - the Fancy Delancy. Smoked tuna with creamcheese and wasabi roe on a bialy, and a little side order of beet, apple and herring salad, it was the perfect brunch.

There's no seating at Russ & Daughters, so I found a picnic table in little Sara D. Roosevelt Park on Second Avenue, under the trees watching some old fellows practice tai chi.