‘Stop at the Red Apple’
Founder’s daughter talks about her childhood at the Route 17 landmark
Joanne Palmer • Cover Story
Published: 12 September 2014
It’s one of those absolute generational and geographic divides.
If you are from somewhere other than here, or if you are below, say, 40 or so, the Red Apple Rest means nothing to you.
But if you are from here, defined very broadly, and if you are at least nudging middle age, then even if you never actually went there, your memory will conjure up images of that iconic place. It was what? A diner, sort of, or more accurately a cafeteria, a rest stop on the way up to the mountains. (And if you have to ask which mountains, then never mind. It’s the Catskills, dear. Now go and play while we grown-ups talk…)
The Jewish Standard
Elaine, who knew about lox, chopped egg and many delicious, homemade foods before she learned her times table, has written a book about the Southfields restaurant and her beloved father and family: “Stop at the Red Apple” (State University of New York Press, Albany). Its 265 pages, with photographs, is at once a love letter to Reuben Freed; then applause for those who built a business from scratch and invested day and night for more than five decades; and, finally, as the sunset of the restaurant became inevitable, a historical journey about part of American culture.
Elaine Freed Lindenblatt is a masterful writer. She is at once accomplished in her prose and then poetic because she releases the emotion of the family and its business that were so thoroughly enjoyed by so many for so long.
This is a book to sit with and savor in another “visit” to the Red Apple. It is beyond a family story. It is many stories, and so many are the enduring, revealing characters, so well described as are the decades and the culture in those years.
Arthur Gunther III’s review (12/29/14): (www.thecolumnrule.com)
Stuffed with vignettes, photos (including some of celebrity autographs), interviews, and personal recollections, this charming memoir describes the beloved restaurant during its heyday–and should offer many readers a pleasant trip down memory lane.
Hudson Valley Magazine, 2/13/15