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With national chains taking over the cooking supply industry, it’s a relief to find a family-owned gem that’s been doing it for decades. Broadway Panhandler, just off of Washington Square Park, has been featured in Food Network Magazine, Cooking Light and the New York Times for their quirky cookware. And next week, they’re coming to What’s Cooking with a lineup of products you never knew your kitchen needed.
Below, find our conversation with Broadway Panhandler’s Heather Lamster about the shop and some of the products they’ll be featuring at What’s Cooking.
Edible Brooklyn: How did the family get into the gourmet cookware business?
Heather Lamster: The family business was founded on the Bowery in 1939 as a military cookware and cutlery supplier. Over time, it expanded to serve restaurants, daycare centers, hospitals, correctional facilities, schools and culinary professionals. In the early 1970s, owner Norman Kornbleuth drew influence from James Beard and Calphalon inventor Ron Kasperzak and decided to bring quality cookware previously only available to restaurants and institutions to the home chef.
EB: How have you focused on staying local?
HL: We know New York kitchens better than anyone else. We have remained local since opening our doors in 1976 by always listening to our customers and guiding them through making the right choices that are within their budget and will complement their cooking and serving style. As an independent retailer with one brick and mortar location, we can quickly stock the items our customers tell us they want and we can respond to New York–based trends.
EB: What will you feature at What’s Cooking?
HL: We have a lot of great things to feature! We will be demonstrating how to make homemade soda with SodaStream; how to create fast and easy sushi using the Rice Cube; a foolproof, mess-free way to separate an egg; and how to easily extract fresh citrus mist using the Lekue Citrus Sprayer. We will also showcase the newest in nutritional scales with the Esacli Smart Connect Kitchen Scale; innovative knife blade designs from Wüsthof; advances in nonstick cookware from Swiss Diamond; and many bar/beer related items.