Feature

The centenarian diner

Harry Rosen could be the oldest foodie in New York City.

Harry Rosen could be the oldest foodie in New York City, said Corey Kilgannon in The New York Times. Every night, the 103-year-old heads out for dinner at a top-rated Manhattan restaurant. “Maybe because I’m eating alone at my age, people at other tables start conversations,” says Rosen. He often lies about his age. “I tell them I’m 90. If I tell them my real age, it becomes the whole subject of conversation and makes it look like I’m looking for attention, which I’m not.” The fine cuisine Rosen now enjoys is a world away from the meager meals he ate growing up in Russia. His family fled the country after the 1917 revolution and found refuge in New York, where the young Rosen eventually took a job at an office-supply company. “I knew it was the business for me, the same way you know you’re in love with a woman.” He founded his own successful stationery firm, and developed a taste for good food while dining with clients at upscale restaurants. Rosen, whose wife of 70 years died five years ago, would like to find a regular dining companion. A recent six-month fling with a 90-year-old woman, he says, did not work out. “I’m still open to meeting someone. I still have the desire. That’s what counts.”

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