Kaplan’s Deli was located on Broadway in the Castkills town of Monticello. For almost 50 years Kaplan’s served authentic kosher deli meat by Hebrew National including corned beef & hot dogs.
The Catskill Mountains bustled through the ’50s and ’60s. The summer months would bring thousands of visitors to Monticello on their way to resorts such as The Concord, Grossingers, Kutshers and the Nevele. As the years rolled attendance at the resorts dwindled and traffic slowed to a crawl. The restaurant and the town struggled. Kaplan’s held out for a while but finally closed in 1992.
The beautiful lighted sign stayed up for more than a decade after the restaurant closed.
The sign was removed in 2005. The Sullivan County Diplomat covered the removal:
MONTICELLO — September 16, 2005 – After decades of serving as arguably the brightest and most recognizable business on Broadway in Monticello, Kaplan’s closed in 1992 – but its large and famous stainless steel sign beamed far and wide . . . until this past Tuesday, when it finally came down after urging from Village of Monticello Mayor James Barnicle and Manager Richard Sush.
The famous restaurant was known for its delicatessen, which served thousands upon thousands. But the village’s leaders decided that the landmark business would have to be retired – despite its historical legacy.
Barnicle acknowledged the nostalgia factor – but to other people arriving in the area, it was just a dilapidated building, he said.
The mayor said the removal of the sign was a step forward for the village. Other local businesses who are in violation of sign codes will also be asked to remove or replace theirs.
Keller Glass of Jeffersonville was unable to salvage the stainless steel, as the letters did not hold together when removed. They were dumped at Liberty Scrap Metal in Parksville.
Andre Musovic, the owner of the building, and AAA Realty and Management in New York City plan to rent two stores in the former restaurant.