Russ & Daughters Settle Style Spat with Nick Liberato and Borscht Belt Deli
The soul of Jewish appetizing was the subject of a flare-up late last month. Between the old guard, Russ & Daughters, and New Jersey newcomer Borscht Belt Delicatessen.
The heart of the matter was an accusation by the Lower East Side institution that Borscht Belt and its chef, Nick Liberato, ripped off the iconic look and feel of Russ & Daughters. Their post to Instagram, and subsequent media coverage spiraled; the backlash was swift and burned hot. Messages filled with hate – much of it directed toward Liberato – proliferated in the ensuing week.
By Thursday, though, both sides reached “an amicable agreement” related to the restaurant experience. Apparently, Liberato hadn’t been “involved in the outsourced design decisions of the establishment.”
“We appreciate that The Borscht Belt acted quickly to respond to the concerns that we raised and has agreed to change their decor to more closely mirror their tribute to the Borscht Belt,” Russ & Daughters brass said in a follow-up Instagram post. “We also want to make clear that we don’t condone the negative comments that were made on Instagram.”
Liberato himself came out with a simultaneous statement, “We are grateful that we have been able to work with Russ & Daughters to clear up any confusion. We are eager to shift our focus back to offering customers a unique Catskills-themed experience.”