Juicy, crunchy, cool, hot, delicious - I FINALLY tried the pastrami at Langer's. My life is now complete.
- Clare K Sep 20, 2006 10:14 PM
So I went to Langer’s, finally, for their famous #19 (pastrami, cole slaw, Russian dressing on rye), and I think I can honestly say that I have never had a better pastrami sandwich. Honestly, I’ve never been a fan of pastrami, because at most places, it is a mountain of dry, crumbly, overly-salty meat that sticks in between your teeth. The rye flavor is usually overpowering, but the bread itself cannot hold up the mound of mediocre meat.
But Langer’s is a different story: Slices of juicy, lean pastrami are so tender that it’s almost like eating steak slices. The flavor is spot-on; a deep, rich pastrami taste without all the unnecessary saltiness. The cool, crunchy cole slaw is just sweet enough to balance out the flavor of the meat, and the Russian dressing’s tang just rounds out the sandwich. And the bread! Chewy crusty with crunchy edges and a soft but hearty middle that holds up even the wet cole slaw. This is no soggy, sloppy sandwich. Everything just works. Beautifully. This is the kind of sandwich I dream of...
I ate the ENTIRE SANDWICH...yes, I did. I think it’s safe to say that I will be skipping dinner tonight, but it was worth it. I’ll definitely be going back.
On a side note, we stopped by Silverlake Wine on the way back to the office. It is one of my favorite wine shops...great wine, no pretentiousness. Randy (owner) knows his wines, and if you haven’t been yet, I highly recommend stopping by.
i made the mistake of trying to figure out what "nippy" cheese tasted like. i got the nippy cheese + kraut version. i traded halves w/ a friend who got a #19.
the genius of the #19 is the mixture of all flavors and textures. salty, sweet, sour, bitter, soft, chewy, and crunchy.
i will never order another sandwich there. ever.
I love the pastrami at Langer's, and if anything I sometimes find that it is a bit on the too trimmed and lean, therefore dry side, so I ask that it not be. Sandwiches served with a pretty good pickle wedge. I like to order a basket of fries to share with my tablemates, but they have to be ordered well done.
Langer's is a spectacular experience of well-ordered beauty. It's funny - paging through old Langer's-related posts, there are dozens of posts through the years by different authors, all titled something like "Langer's . . . Finally!" You don't see a lot of "Langer's - What's The Big Deal?" even from the really grumbly folks.
The sad thing about Langer's is that once I had the vanilla milkshake there. It was so fantastic that while my tablemates were having a transcendental experience regarding the meat, I was off in vanilla-world and we couldn't even carry on a talking-with-your-mouth-full conversation. It was a thick, slightly icy delivery vehicle for an experience of almost bitterly intense vanilla that I am still remembering months - perhaps a year - after the fact. It took over your whole attention, like having someone sit you down for a serious talking-to, except vanilla-flavored. I think I associate it with punishment because it was so intensely flavored, and so painful to consume (after demolishing half a plain sandwich and half a #19). The sad part is that every time I've been there since, I've been too full and too rational to order it.