Jeremy Jacobowitz makes a living by tasting as many delicious treats as many can dream of. After years of working in the television industry, he left the small screen behind and started making videos, building a community of around 1 million followers across various platforms.
A proud New Yorker quintessential, Jacobowitz focuses primarily on street food and dining spots throughout the Big Apple. However, he occasionally goes on tour outside the city, and has recently completed his series of special videos in Japan and South Korea.
“I grew up Jewish, my whole family was Jewish, I drank a bar mitzvah, I did everything. There is,” Jacobowicz says.
What does it mean to be a New York Jew?
“For me, I define it more as my culture than my religion, because there are certainly some very religious Jews in New York, and that’s not me. New Yorkers in the Jewish community have a connection to New York and it comes through.So bagels are a New York specialty.Yes, they are Jews from Poland, but it’s all rooted in one. I think that’s what connects me more than anything else. [Judaism] It’s definitely culture and history, and that’s who I am. ”
You mostly post videos about food and travel, but you also touch on anti-Semitic topics. Do you feel the rise in anti-Semitism on the ground reflected in the statistics?
“I’m not going to deny the stats. The stats are there. It’s still a problem. You don’t necessarily feel it on the street. I think it’s part of a deeper conversation. My life is online. Me Every day we see anti-Semitism from high to low levels in the comments on .
“One of the things I always remember is being in the temple from a young age, and the number one thing we’ve said over and over again, especially when it comes to the Holocaust, is ‘never forget’. And as a kid, I thought, ‘That’s ridiculous. How can we forget the Holocaust? ’ But we see that play out. Less than a hundred years later, people have forgotten about it. And it’s insane to me that they would say something like that.
“I talk about what I look like, who I am, why my perspective has become this way. Even things like ‘I take a shower.’ As ridiculous as it sounds, this is actually deeply rooted in anti-Semitism. I don’t think some people even mean it as mean or anti-Semitic, but I don’t think they realize how deep-rooted it is. ”
does it hurt?
“If you post daily videos to about 1 million viewers on every platform you’re going to get a bad apple. To be fair I get told about everything every day So beyond the Jews.” “Every day I get trolled and every day people are mean to me. Because it’s work.”
Have you been to Israel? ”Yes, I did Birthright about 10 years ago now. I loved it, but I think it was weird. I appreciate the free travel, of course, but I had too many meetings where I had to sit and keep talking about things like, “I have to be Jewish, I have to have a Jewish baby.” Well, it was free travel, so it should be. I’m not complaining, I’m just telling the truth.
That said, we didn’t have the liberty to explore the food side of Israel on this trip.
“Of course, it’s not that many. With 25 people, it’s tough. So I’d like to go back there. I’ve had a few chances, but the timing just wasn’t right.”
Are you following the news here in Israel too?
“I don’t like the direction in which a lot of politics are going in Israel. I think there are a lot of complications in Israel from the beginning. But with many countries that I love, I realized that there are many political differences.” “I have many political differences from my favorite America, Japan, Korea, and other places where I can love and love food, culture, and people. So I’m worried, but that’s not what I mean.’
It goes back to why I love all these countries I travel to. The people, the culture, the food, that’s why I travel, and one of the best places to do it is Israel. With that in mind, I have political disagreements about much of what is going on there. ”
Jakobowitz started videography as a hobby, but initially continued to make television appearances. About eight years ago, I realized that to be successful in this field, I needed to switch to social his media full-time and secure a few sponsorship deals for my videos at the same time. For example, his recent trips to Japan and South Korea were made in collaboration with sponsors.
How do you choose where to shoot your videos?
“I probably run about a dozen restaurants a day and shoot three times a week. If I can’t find the dish, or the story I want to tell with it, that dish may be put on the backburner, but if there’s a dish I want to try or this story I want to tell, that’s what drives me. It drives you there.”
Do you also post about places you didn’t like?
“No. I think to be a critic you have to do things a lot differently than I do. I have to make sure I don’t let them know I really need to review the place I’m filming there they obviously know I’m there if I said I was coming Regardless, they know who I am and if they see this giant idiot with a camera, they know what’s going on. Emphasize and keep everything positive.”
Is there still a strong trend toward Israeli restaurants in New York these days?
“Yeah, I literally just finished compiling a new Israeli restaurant five minutes ago. With more and more locations opening up, everyone in New York seems to like it.”
So what about an old-fashioned Jewish deli? ”They are sadly disappearing. I love those people, too, who go back to my roots as a New York Jew. They’ve struggled a bit more, but there are still some classics left.
There are indeed Jewish-inspired restaurants opening, but it’s more diner food than necessarily Jewish food. I’m still at a loss for this because, again, the way I define Jewish food is the Jewish food I grew up with and it’s very similar to New York Jewish food. I’m not kosher, I’ve never been kosher. Israeli restaurants in New York City are not kosher. Most Jewish restaurants in New York City are not. I would say half and half. I think it’s kosher style. I would never call a cheeseburger kosher. I also don’t want someone to go there and think it’s kosher and it’s not. ”
One of the big challenges in the field of food writing and photography is trying to convey the taste of your food to your audience. After all, how many times can you say something is crispy, has balanced flavors, and is simply delicious?
“Looking back at my videos, I think I say the same thing over and over because there are limited ways to say something is good.
If it sounds too scripted, like a flower trying to find the words to make it sound unrealistic. So I just film myself doing two things while eating. Record everything that comes to your mind. Then I think about it for a second and think about how to really represent this on camera and I say yes. Then in editing I combine it so that it feels as natural as possible. It hardly matters what I say about the dish as long as I’m excited. ”
What happens the day after you post something nice about a place?
“Sometimes restaurants contact me. A few weeks ago I went to a restaurant called Carriage House and posted about their burgers. And then a week or two later I ran into a friend, the chef owner. said sales of burgers increased fivefold the day after the video was posted.
“No, I spend very little time eating. Unfortunately, I use computers much more than tech people. I sit in front of a computer all day and edit. That’s my job.” “
I can imagine suddenly you can’t enter the restaurant depending on where I post. I think that will happen over time. I think it’s rare for people to jump right in. I think they will go there someday. Maybe they don’t live in New York, but when they travel to New York they go there. Well, it may not be tomorrow, right after posting, but it will be in a few months. ”
do you cook at home?
“Yes, I cook very basic food. I eat most of my meals at home, but they are basic, healthy, and the same every day. can.”
We don’t just eat all day long.
“No, I spend very little time eating. Unfortunately, I use computers much more than tech people. I sit in front of a computer all day and edit. That’s my job.” .”