Fellow Americans, our long national knish nightmare is over.
Five months after a factory fire halted production, Gabila’s Famous Coney Island Square Knishes are back on store shelves, in delis, and at food carts.
“They’re going to fly off the grill today,” said Oscar Deluna of Katz’s Deli, upon receiving the first shipment of knishes since September last week. The New York City landmark reportedly sells 6,000 knishes a month, but has had to turn away customers empty handed since the fall.
Round, baked knishes were available, but many could accept no substitute for the signature square, fried potato knishes.
Gabila’s began operation in 1921 in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. It moved to a facility in Copiague, Long Island in 2006. In late September of last year, a fire damaged their knish-making machine. The company would promise each month that the knishes would return, initially predicting that they would be back by Hanukkah. But fixing the one-of-a-kind production system took longer than expected.
Originally a New York brand, Gabila’s has spread to restaurants and supermarkets across the country, and is sold online and even at big box retailers like Costco. The knish shortage therefore made national headlines. Knishes went for sale on eBay, and a Jewish culinary center devised an at-home recipe to help sustain fans.