the spot: Otherside Deli 1104 W. 34th St Austin TX 78705
the eats: The Roddy
the bucks: $11
the full nelson: The first pastrami sandwich that has made me miss LA a little less
In the weeks leading up to my imminent departure from Los Angeles in the summer of 2015, I made sure to eat at as many of my favorite haunts as I could. Knowing that I couldn’t get to them all, I made a special emphasis on foods that I knew would be in short supply in the Lone Star State. Falafels, Baja style fish tacos and delicatessen fare topped the list. Sure, one can find a respectable falafel in a city like Austin, but just not in the same frequency as one can find them in the city of Angels, or with the same variety; Israeli, Lebanese and Armenian options abound when it comes to scoring a Middle Eastern hush puppy.
As far as deli fare as concerned, I knew I would be in dire straits. So I made sure to hit up Langer’s delicatessen: home to the best pastrami sandwich in the universe. Yes, it’s better than Katz in NYC. Langer’s magnificently crafted pastrami sandwich, whose rye bread is just as perfect as the hand carved slices of pepper smoked beef, was worth a flight back to LA in my opinion. And I held to that opinion for years now, right up till about last week.
the spot: Slyman’s Restaurant 3106 St. Clair ave Cleveland OH 44114
the eats: Corned Beef Sandwich
the bucks: $15
the full nelson: As big as it looks. As delicious as it looks. A Corned Beef legend.
Lebron James. President George W. Bush. Ali Khan. What do all three of us have in common? We all came to The Temple of Corned Beef in Cleveland: Slyman’s restaurant. Slyman’s restaurant is that kind of place: special, genuine and 100% blue collar. Don’t let the $15 price tag full you, this sandwich isn’t some johnny come lately artisanal interpretation, but rather quality served at absurdly enormous proportions. Slyman’s Corned Beef sandwich is easily enough for three to four people. But the Slyman’s Corned Beef sandwich isn’t the only draw to this Cleveland deli institution . . .
the spot: Harry and Ida’s 189 Avenue A New York NY 10009
the eats: “The Pops” 1/2lb Pastrami Sandwich
the bucks: $17.50(!)
the full nelson: New School Pastrami joint aiming to be a contender for best in NYC
Founded in 2015, I suppose one could call Harry and Ida’s a new school pastrami joint, though their methods are very much connected to the days of old. Pastrami makes up only one of their sandwich offerings, and with items like Roasted Squash and Smoked Eel on the menu, I wouldn’t call Harry and Ida’s a classic Jewish delicatessen. Still there is a personal connection to Jewish Deli history: the owner’s grandparents, Harry and Ida, ran a delicatessen in NYC about 100 years ago. And these guys know how to make legit pastrami. The million dollar question is of course whether this pastrami sandwich is worth the almost $18 dollar price tag. Well, you’re gonna have to keep reading to find out!
the spot: Bob’s Clam Hut 315 US route 1 Kittery ME 03904
the eats: Jumbo Lobster Roll
the bucks: $24.95
the full nelson: a sandwich splurge worth every bite
In the world of Lobster Rolls, Bob’s Clam Hut isn’t the cheapest deal around; that title is held by Sullivan’s which we featured in Cheap Eats Boston. But it sure does make a case for one heck of a sandwich splurge. No, the $25 sandwich won’t have you rolling on the floor from the pangs of overeating, but it is unadulterated seafood indulgence at its finest. And it all starts with showcasing the whole point of a $20+ sandwich . . . the lobster.