Guss' Pickles Maybe, Sort of Returning to the Lower East Side (UPDATED)

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The Guss' Pickles we know and love and miss -- the one that occupied the Lower East Side for 85 years before vacating its tiny Orchard Street storefront last March -- was not, as previously reported, at Sunday's International Pickle Day. But United Pickle -- the owner of both the Guss name and a Guss' Pickles in Cedarhurst and -- was. And United Pickle is planning to bring Guss' back to the Lower East Side.

The Lo-Down [note that the link to the story doesn't work, but it is viewable through its Google Reader feed] attended yesterday's Pickle Day festivities and spoke with Stephen Leibowitz, the owner of United Pickle.

Leibowitz -- whose 2007 legal settlement with Patricia Fairhurst, the owner of the Orchard Street Guss', gave him ownership of the Guss' name -- told the blog that he and his son, Andrew (who's the company's CEO) are scouting a new home for Guss' on the Lower East Side, and will be going to court in the near future in order to secure legal approval. Should all go according to plan, Guss' will open next spring or summer.

On the one hand, the idea of more pickles on the Lower East Side is a welcome one. On the other, the somewhat ugly history between United Pickle and Fairhurst gives us pause. As does this charming advertisement, which, pardon the pun, leaves a distinctly sour taste in our mouths.

UPDATE: Ed Litvak of the Lo-Down has e-mailed us with this clarification sent to him from Stephen Leibowitz: "We are already in WHOLE FOODS Houston & Delancey with the GUSS' line and have no intention opening in the Lower East Side, since we are in every Whole Foods across the country. WE were talking about Whole FOODS, not opening on the Lower East Side."

A simple misunderstanding or furious back peddling? It remains to be seen, but we're inclined to believe that Leibowitz spoke a little too soon...

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