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Guss' Pickles

A genuine Lower East Side institution, Guss' Pickles has been providing area residents, epicures and intrepid travelers with delicious pickled products for almost a century.

It's fitting that one of the Lower East Side's landmarks was founded by a Russian immigrant. Russian native Izzy Guss arrived in New York at the dawn of the 20th Century with thousands of other European newcomers. Like many of his fellow immigrants, Izzy rented a pushcart and sold produce-including his now famous pickles--on the Lower East Side.

Peddling pickles was a ready, if hardly ideal, first business for immigrants: it was a low-skilled job that required relatively little overhead. Indeed, cheap rental fees for pushcarts and the large market for pickles meant that anyone willing to work long hours could not only earn a profit, but eventually buy their own cart or even open a shop.

Izzy Guss took the latter route, opening his own pickle shop on Hester Street in 1920. At the time, the neighborhood was teeming with 80 other pickle shops. However, immigration restrictions, a ban on pushcarts and the steady economic decline of the Lower East Side felled almost all of these shops.

However, Guss' Pickles managed to survive these fallow times and now stands as the last of the area's old pickle shops. Pat Fairhurst, the current owner of Guss' Pickles, still mixes the stores' signature blend of flavors: corriander, mustard seed, bay leaves, peppercorns, red peppers and garlic. Though the neighborhood may have changed, Guss' pickles, peppers and other famous goods remain as tasty as ever.

A passel of pickles? No! A PLETHORA of pickles!

Merchant Information
Guss' Pickles
85-87 Orchard Street, NY NY 10002
Store phone: 212-334-3616

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108 Orchard Street | 212-431-0233 | lestm@tenement.org