Scoop: Jewish deli with bagels and challah to open on Graham Street

Scoop: Jewish deli with bagels and challah to open on Graham Street

A preliminary rendering of Meshugganah on North Graham (rendering courtesy of Alicia Husband and Christy Chapman of RBA Group)

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The Jewish deli Meshugganah has signed a lease for its first brick-and-mortar location: A 3,000-square-foot space at an adaptive reuse development on Graham Street called The Shop.

The exact location is 1108 N Graham, a mile from Camp North End and right next to Petty Thieves Brewing Co.

  • The space is large enough to build out a kitchen and have ample room for a catering business and deli seating, says Meshugganah owner Rob Clement.
  • His goal is to open the deli this fall.

What to expect: Meshugganah will have a rotating menu that includes deli staples like sandwiches, matzo ball soup, knishes, blintzes and meat by the pound. It’ll have fresh challah on Friday nights for Shabbat, then all-day brunch on Saturday that includes challah French toast and house-made bagels. 

“I wouldn’t do bagels if I didn’t think we could do the best bagels in town. I don’t believe good bagels only belong in New York,” Clement says.

  • Meshugganah recently brought on Hannah Woociker of Moonbox Bakery as an equity partner. She specializes in baked goods like black and white cookies.

Additionally, Clement says, Meshugganah will have an expansive array of vegetarian and vegan options. “To me it’s important we’re cooking food for everybody,” Clement adds.

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Zoom out: Clement, former executive chef at The Porter’s House, started Meshugganah last September as a pop-up deli. He’d make stops at breweries like Free Range and Petty Thieves, growing his following each week.

  • The Petty Thieves connection is part of what drew Clement to The Shop, a former truck shop that was built in 1952.
  • Clement had started a Kickstarter to help fund the brick-and-mortar location, but the deli never fully depended on that funding, Clement says.

Clement wants to run Meshugganah less as a typical transactional restaurant and more of a launchpad for his employees.

  • For instance, the deli will be employee-owned and will provide full benefits, Clement says. Additionally, it’ll serve eventually as an incubator for employees who ultimately want to branch out and open their own restaurant.
  • “Everybody has a chance to grow from this business financially and beyond, personally and beyond,” Clement says.

At The Shop, leasing hasn’t slowed much despite the pandemic, says Davis Hahn, a partner with Ascent Real Estate Capital, which partnered on the development with Tribek Partners. Along with Meshugganah and Petty Thieves, other tenants include Sparx Logistics, AME Engineering and BoltGroup.

“We’re thrilled to land Meshugganah here, we think it will be a great amenity to all of the employees at The Shop and the area,” Hahn says.

Meshugganah

A sandwich at Meshugganah (Photo by Peter Taylor)

The Shop adaptive reuse project at 1100 N. Graham Street in North End

The Shop adaptive reuse project at 1100 N. Graham Street in North End (courtesy of Ascent Real Estate Capital)

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