(New York Jewish Week) — It’s not every day that a new ice cream parlor opens on the Upper East Side — much less a new, “French-inspired” scoop shop opened by the offspring of one the most famous Jewish families in New York’s culinary scene.
On a sunny Wednesday afternoon, Sasha Zabar launched his latest food venture: Glace, an ice cream parlor that boasts some 20 homemade flavors, including Pistachio White Chocolate and PB&J. He’s the grandson of Lillian and Louis Zabar, who founded the eponymous Upper West Side gourmet grocery and appetizing store in 1934, and the son of Eli Zabar, the Upper East Side restaurateur who has 10 different stores and eateries.
Within minutes of the opening of Glace — the French word for ice cream — a gaggle of high schoolers had already made it their mid-afternoon hangout spot, crowding around bright red outdoor dining tables.
“There’s really nowhere to get ice cream in the neighborhood,” Zabar, 31, told the New York Jewish Week as he scooped cups and cones from behind the counter for the steady trickle of customers. “I grew up here and there used to be a Ciao Bella on 92nd between Madison and Fifth. After that closed in 2010, I’ve always wanted another ice cream store nearby.”
Located at 1266 Madison Ave., Glace occupies the former location of the French gluten-free bakery Noglu, which is also operated by Eli and Sasha. The bakery moved to a larger location just a few doors down at the beginning of 2022.
And though the scoop shop’s small, bright pink storefront with just a few stools for indoor seating is a new, independent venture, Glace stays true to the space’s gluten-free roots: Noglu’s gluten-free brownies and cookies are incorporated into several flavors, and the housemade waffle cones are also gluten-free. Glace offers homemade soft serve, sorbet, sundaes and milkshakes, and liquid toppings like hot fudge and raspberry sauce.
“I did all the flavors, I designed the store, it’s my vision being executed with a little bit of Noglu and Eli’s influence. But it’s a separate business,” Zabar said when asked how he feels about carrying on the family tradition. “It feels good, but it’s different in many ways. I want it to be its own thing.”
Then again, Zabar’s desire to strike out on his own also has precedent in the family: His father Eli split from the original Upper West Side Zabar’s business in 1973 when he moved across the park to found gourmet food shop E.A.T. Sasha Zabar and his twin, Oliver, have been involved in their father’s food empire for half a decade, and have already launched a few of the brand’s businesses, including Eli’s Night Shift, a craft beer bar on 79th and Third Ave., and Devon, a Lower East Side restaurant and cocktail bar that closed in 2021.
Zabar noted that many of his 20-some flavors — including Toasted Almond, which is reminiscent of a “gourmet version of Good Humor bar,” Zabar said, and Banoffee, a banana and salted caramel flavor — are inspired by memories from a childhood filled with Jewish celebrations, although he has yet to focus on particularly “Jewish” flavor profiles (like the Chocolate Covered Caramel Matzoh Ice Cream sold at his father’s shop this Passover for $20 a pint). “I am mostly focused on good ingredients and good flavors,” he said.
On opening day — which Zabar referred to as “an early draft” — Zabar had already identified some changes he wanted to make. The ice cream was harder than he intended (a freezer temperature fix) and he wanted to reorganize the toppings — the jars of almonds, pistachios, sprinkles and honeycomb meringue weren’t as obviously displayed as he wanted them to be.
“There are still some things that may change,” he said, adding that he plans to rotate flavors and toppings weekly, depending on what’s in season and what’s popular. “I just want to get it up and running and we’ll see where it goes.”
As for Glace’s customers, none seemed to pick up on Zabar’s perceived missteps. Several Upper East Siders out walking their dogs or taking a stroll excitedly popped their heads in to see what was finally filling the space that had been vacant for a year. While many walked in with promises to come back soon, some purchased cones, others ordered scoops and one chic older woman even tried the “Mac-wich,” a scoop of ice cream sandwiched in between two homemade, gluten-free macarons.
“I have a lot of thoughts,” said Lily, a ninth grader from a nearby high school, who stopped by to try out a mango sorbet in a waffle cone. “I’m scared to go to Noglu because it’s so expensive; I don’t even want to ask for water. I’m glad there is somewhere else to go and I love the flavors.”
(For what it’s worth, a gluten-free croissant at Noglu will set you back $10.50. A small scoop at Glace costs $7 — the cones are an additional $3.)
Her friend Lauren, who is gluten-free, opted for a chocolate cone, telling the New York Jewish Week that Glace’s opening “is really special to me.”
“I love the aesthetic, the flavors are amazing, I haven’t had a cone in five years because I can never find a gluten-free one,” she said. “It shouldn’t be three extra dollars, but at the same time I’m willing to pay for it. It’s really good.”
The pair couldn’t talk long — they were rushing to finish their ice cream cones before they melted in the sunshine. Plus, their next class began in three minutes.
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Phyllis Pollock died at home Sunday September 3, 2023 in Winnipeg, after a courageous lifetime battle with cancer.
Phyllis was a mother of four: Gary (Laura), daughter Randi, Steven (deceased in 2010) (Karen), and Robert. Phyllis also had two grandchildren: Lauren and Quinn.
Born in Fort Frances, Ontario on February 7, 1939, Phyllis was an only child to Ruby and Alex Lerman. After graduating high school, Phyllis moved to Winnipeg where she married and later divorced Danny Pollock, the father of her children. She moved to Beverly Hills in 1971, where she raised her children.
Phyllis had a busy social life and lucrative real estate career that spanned over 50 years, including new home sales with CoastCo. Phyllis was the original sales agent for three buildings in Santa Monica, oceanfront: Sea Colony I, Sea Colony II, and Sea Colony. She was known as the Sea Colony Queen. She worked side by side with her daughter Randi for about 25 years – handling over 600 transactions, including sales and leases within the three phases of Sea Colony alone.
Phyllis had more energy than most people half her age. She loved entertaining, working in the real estate field, meeting new and interesting people everyday no matter where she went, and thrived on making new lifelong friends. Phyllis eventually moved to the Sea Colony in Santa Monica where she lived for many years before moving to Palm Desert, then Winnipeg.
After battling breast cancer four times in approximately 20 years, she developed metastatic Stage 4 lung cancer. Her long-time domestic partner of 27 years, Joseph Wilder, K.C., was the love of her life. They were never far apart. They traveled the world and went on many adventures during their relationship. During her treatment, Phyllis would say how much she missed work and seeing her clients. Joey demonstrated amazing strength, love, care, and compassion for Phyllis as her condition progressed. He was her rock and was by her side 24/7, making sure she had the best possible care. Joey’s son David was always there to support Phyllis and to make her smile. Joey’s other children, Sheri, Kenny, Joshua and wife Davina, were also a part of her life. His kids would Facetime Phyllis and include her during any of their important functions. Phyllis loved Joey’s children as if they were her own.
Thank you to all of her friends and family who were there to support her during these difficult times. Phyllis is now, finally, pain free and in a better place. She was loved dearly and will be greatly missed. Interment took place in Los Angeles.
Gwen Centre Creative Living Centre celebrates 35th anniversary
By BERNIE BELLAN Over 100 individuals gathered at the Gwen Secter Centre on Tuesday evening, July 18 – under the big top that serves as the venue for the summer series of outdoor concerts that is now in its third year at the centre.
The occasion was the celebration of the Gwen Secter Centre’s 35th anniversary. It was also an opportunity to honour the memory of Sophie Shinewald, who passed away at the age of 106 in 2019, but who, as recently as 2018, was still a regular attendee at the Gwen Secter Centre.
As Gwen Secter Executive Director Becky Chisick noted in her remarks to the audience, Sophie had been volunteering at the Gwen Secter Centre for years – answering the phone among other duties. Becky remarked that Sophie’s son, Ed Shinewald, had the phone number for the Gwen Secter Centre stored in his phone as “Mum’s work.”
Remarks were also delivered by Raquel Dancho, Member of Parliament for Kildonan-St. Paul, who was the only representative of any level of government in attendance. (How times have changed: I remember well the steadfast support the former Member of the Legislature for St. John’s, Gord Mackintosh, showed the Gwen Secter Centre when it was perilously close to being closed down. And, of course, for years, the area in which the Gwen Secter Centre is situated was represented by the late Saul Cherniack.)
Sophie Shinewald’s granddaughter, Alix (who flew in from Chicago), represented the Shinewald family at the event. (Her brother, Benjamin, who lives in Ottawa, wasn’t able to attend, but he sent a pre-recorded audio message that was played for the audience.)
Musical entertainment for the evening was provided by a group of talented singers, led by Julia Kroft. Following the concert, attendees headed inside to partake of a sumptuous assortment of pastries, all prepared by the Gwen Secter culinary staff. (And, despite my asking whether I could take a doggy bag home, I was turned down.)
Palestinian gunmen kill 4 Israelis in West Bank gas station
This is a developing story.
(JTA) — Palestinian gunmen killed four people and wounded four in a terror attack at a gas station near the West Bank settlement of Eli, the Israeli army reported.
An Israeli civilian returning fire at the scene of the attack on Tuesday killed one of the attackers, who emerged from a vehicle, and two others fled.
Kan, Israel’s public broadcaster, said one of those wounded was in serious condition. The gunmen, while in the vehicle, shot at a guard post at the entry to the settlement, and then continued to the gas station which is also the site of a snack bar. A nearby yeshiva went into lockdown.
Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant announced plans to convene a briefing with top security officials within hours of the attack. Kan reported that there were celebrations of the killing in major West Bank cities and in the Gaza Strip, initiated by terrorist groups Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad. Hamas said the shooting attack Tuesday was triggered by the Jenin raid.
The shooting comes as tensions intensify in the West Bank. A day earlier, Israeli troops raiding the city of Jenin to arrest accused terrorists killed five people.
The Biden administration spoke out over the weekend against Israel’s plans to build 4,000 new housing units for Jewish settlers in the West Bank. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu also finalized plans to transfer West Bank building decisions to Bezalel Smotrich, the extremist who is the finance minister. Smotrich has said he wants to limit Palestinian building and expand settlement building.
Kan reported that the dead terrorist was a resident of a village, Urif, close to Huwara, the Palestinian town where terrorists killed two Israeli brothers driving through in February. Settlers retaliated by raiding the village and burning cars and buildings.
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