As for the gefulte fish, fuggedaboutit. The last good piece I had was made by my grandmother. I've been searching ever since she died. If you find a good one, please let me know where. Grandma made the horseradish too. Strong enough to curl your hair and bring a tear to your eye.
I love gefilte fish and am probably not as discerning about it as you are, Roberta. I even like the stuff they sell in glass jars in the market.
I think we had some thread about this a while ago-- I was living in Baltimore and the highlight of the city was an organization called The Associated which served Kosher lunches ($5, buffet style) Monday through Thursday. They'd serve homemade gelfilte fish, which definitely was better than the jarred variety.
They also had the halvah dipped in dark chocolate among other things (my goy friends were unable to relate to this delicacy, come to think of it, the gefilte baffled them too).
And, At least once a week they'd serve--what else?--Chinese food.