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Where To Celebrate Rosh Hashanah In New York City

credit: Padoca Bakery / Facebook

This year Rosh Hashanah begins at sundown on Sunday, October 2, and ends on Tuesday, October 4. Below are some recommendations for services, catering, and dinners in New York during the High Holidays. By Jessica Allen.

Guide: Rosh Hashanah, Yom Kippur Services And Schedules In NYC

credit: Gilabrand / Wikipedia

2nd Avenue Deli

162 East 33rd Street
New York, NY

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If you'd like to celebrate Rosh Hashanah at home but can't stand the thought of cooking, consider the 2nd Avenue Deli, a family-run traditional Jewish delicatessen that's been around more or less continuously since 1954. Its dinner serves 12, costs $450, and offers such options as mushroom barley soup (with matzoh balls or kreplach), noodle or potato kugel, chopped liver, roast chicken, turkey with mushroom stuffing, carrot tzimmes, brisket, cole slaw, challah, and chocolate babka, allowing you to modify the menu based on your guests' preferences.

credit: Josh Nelson Project

92nd Street Y

1395 Lexington Avenue
New York, NY

It can be very difficult to attend services if you don't belong to a synagogue. Enter the 92nd Street Y. This community and cultural center on the Upper West Side offers a complete High Holidays package, with Rosh Hashanah, Kol Nidre, and Yom Kippur services conducted by Rabbi Elka Abrahamson. She'll be joined by cantorial soloist Josh Nelson, a classically trained performer who's become one of the most popular contemporary Jewish musicians around (tickets required). Other events include family services (newborns welcome!) and a special Rosh Hashanah buffet lunch.

credit: The Bitter End / Facebook

The Bitter End

147 Bleeker Street
New York, NY

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If you're reading this, then no doubt you know that Rosh Hashanah is the Jewish New Year. While celebrations tend to be less raucous than, say, your typical New Year's Eve party, Rosh Hashanah is in fact a joyous holiday. The Bitter End's revelry features a jazz quartet, along with the traditional stylings of the shofar and a rabbi-led service; the whole shebang is hosted by the inclusive Sim Shalom Jewish Universalist Synagogue. Fun fact(s): a Greenwich Village institution, the Bitter End has been around since 1961, and legends like Curtis Mayfield, Lady Gaga, Bob Dylan, and Jackson Browne have graced its stage.

credit: Manhattan Jewish Experience / Facebook

Manhattan Jewish Experience

5 East 62nd Street
New York, NY

This ain't your bubbe's shul. Geared toward women and men in their 20s and 30s, the Manhattan Jewish Experience offers a range of programming, from ski trips to Shabbat dinners to happy hours and lectures, designed to help young folks meet and learn more about Judaism. During the High Holidays, you can attend services (at one of three locations), break the fast, attend an after party, mingle at a mixer and take a "crash course" in what to expect. "Soul explorers wanted" goes the tagline. New to the center and/or the faith? You can try both out for half-price.

credit: Padoca Bakery / Facebook

Padoca Bakery

359 East 68th Street
New York, NY

More: Best Gluten-Free Bakeries In NYC

Padoca Bakery combines two great culinary traditions: Brazilian and Israeli. Yep, you read that right. This Upper East Side bakery marries Middle Eastern and South American flavors, along with seasonal, local ingredients for wholly unique creations. For the High Holidays, Padoca is offering honey cakes, apple cakes, challah bread and chocolate babka, as well as the "Romeo & Juliet babka," featuring cheese and guava. You can also try the "PDQ," the bakery's take on traditional Brazilian cheese bread—they're cute, gluten-free, and eminently poppable.

credit: Chef Medina NYC / Instagram


251 West 50th Street
New York, NY

Every year the various locations of Toloache host a "Mexican Rosh Hashanah Dinner," featuring a menu of special treats prepared by Chef Julian Medina in honor of the holiday -- among them a house-smoked whitefish salad served with tortilla chips, lamb tacos served with a pickled prune jalapeno salsa, and chicken breast served with kabocha puree, pomegranate salsa, and chile de arbol. Medina tweaks the traditional apple and honey dessert by infusing a honey cake with avocado and topping it with date walnut ice cream and roasted apple salsa. Special cocktails are made with kosher tequila too!

Jessica Allen is a New York-based writer.

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