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Books

Book Review

‘Russ & Daughters’ by Mark Russ Federman

So, you take the F train to Second Avenue and walk east on Houston Street. Keep walking. In time, you will reach a narrow-ish Manhattan food shop that, if you’re not careful, could turn you into a wide-ish person. Above the door, RUSS & DAUGHTERS APPETIZERS glistens in ’50s neon, flanked quotation-mark-style by two fish, as if to say, “Walk no farther. This is the real deal.”

Enter, and behold: Herring of customer Oliver Sacks’s giddiest imaginings. Smoked salmon that has beckoned bellies from Zero Mostel to Meyer Lansky. Little mountains of dried Turkish figs so plump and moist, you would swear they were just plucked from a dried fig tree. And a daunting array of caviar that tastes “as if the sea has kissed your tongue.”

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