Third-Generation Family Business Flourishes 100 Years Later


Teitel Bros is located on Arthur Avenue, just a few blocks from campus. (Courtesy of Twitter)

Established over a century ago, Teitel Brothers Wholesale and Retail Grocery Company continues to thrive in the heart of Little Italy of the Bronx, and a section of 186th street in the Bronx was even named after the store. Conveniently located less than half a mile away from Fordham University at 2372 Arthur Ave., Teitel Brothers services restaurants all around New York City with their delicious assortment of Italian food. 

Teitel Brothers offers a rich variety of delicious products including prosciutto, sopressata, pepperoni, parmesan cheese, burrata, gouda, olive oil and a seemingly limitless array of other outstanding meats and cheeses. The Daily News even named Teitel Brothers as having the best sausage in New York. Aside from the traditional Italian cuisine, the store also offers apricots, fish, nuts and chocolates. 

In 1915, Teitel Brothers was founded by Jacob and Morris Teitel. Part of a Jewish family who had immigrated from Austria in 1912, the brothers were encouraged by their cousins to open an Italian grocery store in the Bronx. The brothers saw the demand for Italian food in the neighborhood as the Belmont area demographic became increasingly Italian. When the business first launched, it quickly felt the effects of the Great Depression. Although they struggled to profit at times, they navigated the economic downturn successfully. 

Balancing their Jewish religion with running an Italian-American based business was not a simple task, and the prejudices of World War II began to affect their small grocery store. The family’s landlord firmly believed that by showcasing their religious beliefs, Teitel Brothers would lose business. The brothers responded to this idea by placing the Star of David in mosaic tiles at the front entrance. Teitel Brothers’ Jewish roots are still seen today as the store closes on all Jewish holidays. 

The Italian grocery store was found over 100 years ago by Morris and Jacob Teitel. (Courtesy of Facebook)

Today, Jacob’s son, Gilbert, is 77 years old and has continued the family tradition of manning the store. His three sons, Jean, Michael and Eddie, currently run the third-generation family business together. Michael and Eddie also both have children who help out in the store from time to time.

Although the store is just 900 square feet, its vibrant and lively atmosphere fills every inch of the room. Often packed with customers chatting with each other and those behind the counter; somehow the staff still makes every customer feel special. The room is surrounded by meats hanging from the ceiling, cheese assortments in the refrigerators, stacks of olive oil piled on one another and boxes of pasta stacked against the sides of the walls. One of the workers will help you almost immediately, always with a smile. 

If you introduce yourself, it will almost certainly lead to a wonderful conversation filled with laughter and maybe even some interesting facts about the store and its workers. They even hand out samples for customers to taste, which may or may not be my favorite part of the store. 

The impact that Teitel Brothers has on the Bronx is unmatched. A family business established over 100 years ago with a rich history of both culture and religion is certainly one you don’t want to miss out on. If you’re lucky enough to be near Little Italy of the Bronx, stopping by Teitel Brothers is a must.


Ava Carreiro, GSB ’24, is a marketing major from New Providence, N.J.