Member Voice – Joshua Pollack

Name: Joshua Pollack, Rosenberg’s Bagels & Delicatessen

Location: Denver, CO

What inspired you to open Rosenberg’s Bagels & Delicatessen? Rosenberg’s Bagels & Delicatessen was inspired by the venerable establishments in New York and New Jersey that I grew up eating at. When I was 11 years old, I started apprenticing at these delis and they paid me in the perfect currency to keep me inspired – lox and cured meats. The old-world methods these east coast delis used to prepare their fish and meat products always stuck with me. When I moved out to Colorado to go to CU as a young adult, I realized these types of establishments didn’t exist out west. Appetizing and delicatessen fare is my soul food, and was the centerpiece of every family gathering, so I knew I had to bring that to Colorado.

What are protein sourcing practices you live by? We source our products directly from conglomerates of small fisherman (i.e. Bristol Bay, Sea to Table, etc.) and maximize use of certain fish products to maintain old-world preparations and extend seasonality. One example is herring, which is sourced from Alaska as a byproduct of its roe. We take the whole lot annually from the fisherman and pickle the filet to use over the better course of the year. Conscientious preservation and fermentation was very important to my ancestors, and these flavorful methods are truly a timeless approach to sustainable and healthful seafood consumption. Likewise, our beef program uses cuts of brisket that are often discarded by farmers who focus their beef production on larger burger companies. By brining and smoking otherwise tough cuts into corned beef and pastrami, we have an ability to make these less popular cuts both delicious and desirable.

What’s a future project you’re excited about? I want to educate the public, raise awareness, and create more demand for under-the-radar products like our herring and tenderized beef, so that byproduct and otherwise not widely used products become a demand to the public. This reduces waste and also makes it feasible for sustainable cattle ranchers and fisherman to maintain their livelihood, with all of our support.