Yonah Schimmel's Knish Bakery

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Yonah Schimmel's Knish Bakery
Yonah Schimmel knishes.png
Yonah Shimmel Knish Bakery.jpg
Yonah Schimmel's Knish Bakery
Yonah Schimmel's Knish Bakery is located in Manhattan
Yonah Schimmel's Knish Bakery
Location within Manhattan
Restaurant information
Food typeKosher bakery
Street address137 East Houston Street (between First Avenue and Second Avenue), on the Lower East Side of Manhattan
CityNew York City, New York
Postal/ZIP Code10002
CountryUnited States
Coordinates40°43′23.23″N 73°59′24.51″W / 40.7231194°N 73.9901417°W / 40.7231194; -73.9901417Coordinates: 40°43′23.23″N 73°59′24.51″W / 40.7231194°N 73.9901417°W / 40.7231194; -73.9901417

Yonah Schimmel's Knish Bakery is a bakery and restaurant, located at 137 East Houston Street (between First Avenue and Second Avenue), in the Lower East Side, Manhattan, that has been selling knishes on the Lower East Side since 1890. Its current location on Houston Street opened in 1910.[1]

As the Lower East Side has changed over the decades and many of its Jewish residents have departed, Yonah Schimmel's is one of the few distinctly Jewish businesses and restaurants that remain as a fixture of this largely departed culture and cuisine.[2][3]

As cited in The Underground Gourmet, a review of Yonah Schimmel's in a collection of restaurant reviews by Milton Glaser and Jerome Snyder, "No New York politician in the last 50 years has been elected to office without having at least one photograph showing him on the Lower East Side with a knish in his face."[4]


Alex Wolfman in Yonah Schimmel's window

About 1890, Yonah Schimmel, a Romanian immigrant, used a pushcart to start his knish bakery. As business grew, a small store on Houston Street was rented by Yonah and his cousin Joseph Berger. When Yonah left the business a few years later, Berger took over the business, retaining the original name. In 1910, the Bergers moved the business to the south side of Houston Street, at its current location. Yonah Schimmel's has been family owned since its inception and is currently operated by Yonah's great nephew, Alex Wolfman.[5]

In 1995, the shop's then-owner, Sheldon Keitz, was implicated in a loan-sharking scheme. The shop was amongst the locations where loans were repaid.[6]

Yonah Schimmel's Knish Bakery Front Window

It is as much a landmark as an eatery and has frequently been an artist's subject. A portrait of the Yonah Schimmel Knish Bakery by Hedy Pagremanski (b. 1929) is in the permanent collection of the Museum of the City of New York.[7] Jewish-Irish painter Harry Kernoff painted this bakery on a trip to New York in 1939.[8] More recently it features in the 2009 Woody Allen film Whatever Works.[9]

The restaurant offers a number of varieties of knishes, including the traditional potato and kasha (buckwheat groats) knishes, known for using the same recipe since the bakery's opening, in addition to other kinds of Eastern European food such as borscht, and runs a takeout business.[10]`In recent years the restaurant has delivered its knishes nationally through Goldbelly, and has been featured in the site's Youtube series.[11][12]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Yonah Schimmel Knishery in New York City, USA". Lonely Planet. Archived from the original on January 25, 2012. Retrieved October 1, 2013.
  2. ^ Topics ; Preservation Tales; Knisheries, Calories, The New York Times, February 5, 1985. Accessed June 21, 2007.
  3. ^ Berger, Joseph. " Trendiness Among the Tenements; Descendants Return to a Remade Lower East Side", The New York Times, September 2, 2004. Accessed June 21, 2007. "H. Eckstein & Sons was not quite as much a fixture of the Lower East Side as Guss's Pickles or Yonah Schimmel Knish Bakery."
  4. ^ Asimov, Eric. "$25 and Under", The New York Times, December 27, 1996. Accessed June 21, 2007.
  5. ^ Roberts, Sam. "Celebrating the Freshest 100-Year-Old Knish", NYTimes.com. Accessed March 17, 2010.
  6. ^ Fried, Joseph P. (February 3, 1995). "3 City Employees Among 14 Arrested in Loan-Sharking Scheme". The New York Times.
  7. ^ "Yonah Schimmel Knish Bakery" Archived September 10, 2009, at the Wayback Machine, Museum of the City of New York. Accessed October 17, 2008.
  8. ^ Murray, Peter; Marshall, Catherine, eds. (October 1, 2014). Art and Architecture of Ireland Volume V: Twentieth Century. Art and Architecture of Ireland. doi:10.3318/978-1-908996-66-4. ISBN 9781908996664.
  9. ^ "Celebrating the Freshest 100-Year-Old Knish". January 13, 2010.
  10. ^ Staff. "Yonah Schimmel Knishes". www.yonahschimmelknish.com. Retrieved May 11, 2017.
  11. ^ Passy, Charles (October 8, 2018). "Danny Meyer Wants to Help You Get Your Favorite Meal, Wherever You Are". The Wall Street Journal. New York.
  12. ^ Goldbelly.com. The Goldbelly Show: Yonah Schimmel Knishes – via Youtube.com.

External links[edit]