How a plate of herring is the secret to Jewish unity

Gishmak Herring
Jeremy Urbach, 21, of Toronto, reviews herring for his YouTube channel called Gishmak Herring. His videographer is Avi Teich, (top right). Urbach says beginners should try pickled herring from Feature Foods of Brampton, Ontario. (Ellin Bessner photos)

There’s something fishy about 21-year-old Jeremy Urbach, who runs Gishmak Herring. It’s a YouTube channel dedicated to reviewing forage fish. (Gishmak means delicious in Yiddish.)

It started as a joke during the pandemic. But now, two years later, the Torontonian’s funny takes on the Ashkenazi dish are reaching a new generation of fans of all flavours of Judaism and beyond.

Urbach is a graduate of TanenbaumCHAT high school, who studied at a yeshiva in Israel before enrolling in a business program at Western University.

His honest love comes from his South African grandparents’ recipes—eaten with the bow-tie cookies known as kichel—and also the monthly Herring and Scotch events attended by his father.

He’s also taken the reviews on the road: to Crown Heights, New York, and all the way to Israel—where he says the herring is too salty. He joins The CJN Daily along with his videographer and longtime pal Avi Teich, to break down why herring is good for you, and why you should try new flavours like chipotle mayo or maple syrup.

What we talked about:


The CJN Daily is written and hosted by Ellin Bessner (@ebessner on Twitter). Zachary Kauffman is the producer. Michael Fraiman is the executive producer. Our theme music is by Dov Beck-Levine. Our title sponsor is Metropia. We’re a member of The CJN Podcast Network. Donate to The CJN and receive a charitable tax receipt by clicking here.