"Why's it so crowded? Because it's so small, and there are a lot of hungry Jews."
Yup, this must be Barney Greengrass.
In a video with the Jewish Daily Forward, third generation owner Gary Greengrass describes the holiday rush at this century-old Upper West Side institution. Hundreds of orders come from all across the country, and the store is at its busiest between Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur.
Between Thursday and Friday before Yom Kippur, Gary estimates that he spends about 40 hours on his feet, working with his staff to process the rush. And then he starts fasting at sundown, "like everybody else."
"The only difference is that when I go to synagogue on Friday night I fall asleep standing up. That's not so easy to do."
Watch the Video
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