Why Oh Why Doesn’t Russ & Daughters Deliver Above 10th Street?

Screen Shot 2013-03-01 at 5.21.25 PMRuss and Daughters

“Russ & Daughters: Reflections and Recipes from the House That Herring Built” comes out next week, and it’s already getting some nice attention from Gothamist and The Times.

We’re looking forward to smearing caviar cream cheese all over this little volume, but in the meantime we’ve got a question: why doesn’t Russ & Daughters offer free delivery past East 10th Street? What’s the rest of the East Village – chopped liver?

Jen Snow, the appetizing institution’s director of PR, says it’s simple: “Like any restaurant, there has to be a boundary somewhere,” she said, crushing our dreams of gratis gravlax delivery. “We cover a large part of the Lower East Side which is within quick walking distance of Russ & Daughters, but the boundaries just have to be somewhere.”

Okay, so why not move that northern boundary up just a little bit, and go to 14th Street, already? Let Grand Street get shafted out of pickled herring!

“One of the guys who’s at the counter hand-slicing the salmon for the free delivery literally has to put down his knife, put on his winter coat, and walk the order,” Ms. Snow explained.

Russ & Daughters offers free delivery during the weekdays from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., for orders of $20 and over. Delivery times vary depending on how busy things are at the Houston Street shop. If you aren’t within walking distance, you can pay a courier fee: $15 if you live in the upper reaches of the East Village.

So will Russ & Daughters ever follow the lead of its equally esteemed neighbor, Katz’s Deli, and hire some delivery boys? Ms. Snow wasn’t aware of any such plans, but we’ll keep pouring on the schmaltz until it happens.