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SEA - new york deli

h
howard 1st Nov 18, 2007 08:52 AM

there has just opened in pike place market (in the economy arcade opposite the main entrance to dilaurenti's) a small place calling itself the "i love new york deli". being as desperate for shmaltz and dr. browns' celray tonic as any displaced gothamite, i am most happy to report that these folks seem to (finally!) have broken the curse against excellent new york (read:jewish) deli in seattle. the bread (what is a deli without bread?) is baked daily in the market and is the first good crusty rye bread and crunchy kaiser rolls i have encountered in the emerald city. everything else - meats, pickles, soft drinks, salads - is brought in from a supplier in brooklyn and is of first quality; the meats kept hot (microwaves are anathema) and sliced to order, the knishes (baked on site) and chopped liver (chicken, not beef) made by the owner to his mother's recipes; the pickles the color of cucumbers and loaded with garlic. sandwiches are relatively cheap considering their gigantic size and i am really looking forward to checking out the soups. welcome to seattle!

  1. l
    Leper Nov 18, 2007 04:25 PM

    Howard, While I'm not from New York, I have visited there many times and have grown a genuine appreciation of their great deli's. (Goldberg's being a major disappointment.) This new spot sounds like a nice addition to Seattle's Chowhound scene.

    1. terrier Nov 18, 2007 10:48 PM

      I'm also a NYC expat, and agree this place does a really decent pastrami sandwich. I look forward to returning for the beef tongue, corned beef, and chopped liver.

      I tried their potato knish, but I'm not wild about it. I like mine smaller, with a bit more texture to the potato - but this is purely subjective. I'll still have to check out the mushroom and kasha versions.

      1. s
        savvy savorer Nov 18, 2007 11:40 PM

        I can's wait to eat there! Knishes!!!!!!!!!!!

        1. seattledebs Nov 19, 2007 09:36 AM

          I walked by this place on Sunday, while taking my boyfriend around Pike Place Market. I didn't get anything, being already full and with dinner plans, but work downtown and will check it out very soon. The knishes looked very good and the menu looked promising. I also asked if they make their mushroom knishes with fresh or canned (even Yonah Schimmel's in New York uses canned, which is very disappointing), and they use fresh. I can't wait to try it!

          1. n
            not the bad Steve Nov 20, 2007 11:39 AM

            Just had a pastrami sandwich, and it was butt-kicking.

            206-381-DELI
            10a - 6p

            1. c
              christy319 Nov 20, 2007 02:14 PM

              I'm no knish expert, but I liked the one I got for lunch. I had a half sour pickle (they bring them in from Brooklyn), too.

              5 Replies
              1. re: christy319
                k
                krb Nov 20, 2007 05:23 PM

                Ate lunch there this week. Found the corned beef dry but the pastrami was very good as were the knishes - yum!

                1. re: krb
                  d
                  dagrassroots Nov 21, 2007 01:13 PM

                  Had the matzoh ball soup today for lunch. It was ok, the balls were sinkers and a little too dense for my tastes, the broth was pretty good. The pastrami looked good but I am a little disappointed they don't hand slice it. In any case, this looks like the best option for jewish syle deli food in seattle.

                  1. re: dagrassroots
                    landguy Nov 21, 2007 05:45 PM

                    Fyi, DeLaurenti sells Carnegie Deli Corned Beef and Pastrami direct from NYC.

                    1. re: landguy
                      extramsg Nov 27, 2007 08:53 PM

                      Allegedly. I believe Carnegie has their pastrami made by Kirkland for these purposes. You can get it at Costco and while it's better than most pastrami in supermarkets, it isn't as good as Carnegie's stuff at their store and I don't think Carnegie's stuff is as good as many of their competitors' stuff.

                    2. re: dagrassroots
                      s
                      stevedgrossman Jan 9, 2008 03:26 PM

                      I personally, have NEVER had matzo ball soup "out" that tasted good...

                      Home made is always the best for this I think.

                2. s
                  savvy savorer Nov 21, 2007 06:36 PM

                  i had the kasha knish, yummy. OOzing with filling.

                  1. h
                    HungWeiLo Nov 21, 2007 10:39 PM

                    Not from NYC, but I enjoy Buffalo Deli on 1st a little into Belltown.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: HungWeiLo
                      k
                      kkbriggs Nov 23, 2007 07:42 AM

                      Not from NYC either, but I've also enjoyed this place. I really like the matzoh ball soup and the sandwiches I've tried have all been really good. They also carry Dr. Brown's Celray soda.

                    2. bbqer Nov 27, 2007 09:25 AM

                      Howard, yesterday I had their special Reuben sandwich. Aside from the excellent corned beef, swiss cheese, sauerkraut, Russian dressing, and caraway rye bread. The proprietor has added a generous dash of horseradish which made a very good sandwich into a great one. Two kosher pickle slices and potato salad came with it for $10.95. Great dining!

                      I'm also aware that they can do combo sandwiches, so I'm looking forward to a pastrami and chopped liver soon. Also a variety of knishes. Best deli food I've had outside NY.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: bbqer
                        barleywino Jan 14, 2008 11:10 AM

                        ditto on the Reuben-- juicy and messy, so good

                      2. seattledebs Nov 28, 2007 12:43 PM

                        I'm sick today, so didn't feel up to pastrami, but I had a mushroom/potato knish. Delicious! Moist, good flavor; I inhaled it. Best knish I've had in Seattle. I also had a look at his rye bread, which he'll sell you an enormous loaf of for $6. That rye bread looks like the real deal.

                        Real deli food in Seattle, how about that. Someone keep an eye on Rachel the bronze pig; she may start to fly.

                        Oh, a tip: I've never had one, but the hot dog place across the way from this deli place sells egg creams.

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: seattledebs
                          bbqer Nov 28, 2007 02:36 PM

                          It is indeed a nice light rye with caraway seed. Tasty! And the owner said they wouldn't let him do a full menu for such a small place but he'll concoct any combination sandwich you might want. I can't wait to have a pastrami and chopped liver.

                        2. s
                          stevedgrossman Jan 9, 2008 03:27 PM

                          Can it really be? Real German/Jewish Rye??

                          I will have to try it!

                          2 Replies
                          1. re: stevedgrossman
                            seattledebs Jan 9, 2008 10:19 PM

                            Yes, and it's good. My only complaint is that I like heavily seeded rye best, and it's lightly seeded. But lightly seeded is more common for sandwiches anyway, I think.

                            By the way, I finally had the pastrami and corned beef (I like them layered together) at this place and it really was very good. Half a sandwich filled me right up, and I saved the other half for the next day's lunch.

                            1. re: stevedgrossman
                              knowspicker Jan 10, 2008 09:03 AM

                              If you want to find German rye the place to go is a Russian deli. From Russia with Love[bellevue], Bravo[aurora] or a little place by Grocery Outlet in Kirkland all buy German dough and bake the rye here. It's the closest thing in Seattle to bread we ate everyday in Prague. It's worth a little bit of a detour for the dark rye.

                            2. natalie.warner Jan 10, 2008 08:41 AM

                              On yelp this deli only has 2 stars. There are only two reviews so far both both gave that rating... what is the real deal?

                              2 Replies
                              1. re: natalie.warner
                                d
                                dagrassroots Jan 10, 2008 10:22 AM

                                You should try it yourself. I personally liked my pastrami sandwich I had there recently; not as good as Katz's in new york or Langers in LA but still the best in Seattle I.M.O. Really its unfair for me to make comparisons to the best of the best, it would be like comparing Lark to French Laundry. Take it for what its worth, a more than decent pastrami sandwich.

                                1. re: natalie.warner
                                  c
                                  christy319 Jan 10, 2008 01:10 PM

                                  Yelp is a terrible place for reviews. It's full of "drive by" reviews--people that went once, had one thing, then diss or rave about the place based only on that. This kind of message board, where there's a running conversation, is a much better venue to judge.

                                  My husband is loving everything this place has--he'd never had things like a tongue sandwich or chopped liver and pastrami but based on the guy's recommendations, he's had them, loved them, and would recommend them to anyone.

                                2. landguy Jan 10, 2008 10:31 AM

                                  The corned beef and pastrami sandwiches are fantastic, all ingredients are imported from Brooklyn, NYC. Have to admit I'm not crazy about the knishes aside from the fried potato knish which is very authentic. I thought the crust on the other knishes was too gummy and not to my liking. Overall this is definitely a gem though IMO, I hope he expands to a real restaurant.

                                  13 Replies
                                  1. re: landguy
                                    m
                                    mics Jan 10, 2008 02:13 PM

                                    say,would somebody be so kind as to give directions,like if one was to drive there to pick-up before work.so where would one park,off of 1st or would you better to come up from down below?being from nyc and pastrami is hard to find.the only 2 places i would eat pastrami in wa would be barneys and roxys, so im dieing to try this place out potatoe knishes,hum. thanks mic

                                    1. re: mics
                                      barleywino Jan 10, 2008 02:36 PM

                                      i think there are some 5 minute spaces on 1st between Pike and Union (west side of the street). but NY Deli might not be open before about 11am. enter the hallway between deLaurentis and the newspaper stand and it's a few stalls down on the right.

                                      1. re: barleywino
                                        d
                                        dagrassroots Jan 10, 2008 09:13 PM

                                        Use your nose and try to smell the donuts once you found those the deli is the next stall over.

                                        1. re: barleywino
                                          h
                                          howard 1st Jan 12, 2008 08:21 AM

                                          sorry if i am sounding a bit like a shill but the owner has started a line of breakfast sandwiches and is fully open for business every day at 9am

                                          1. re: howard 1st
                                            bbqer Jan 12, 2008 10:36 AM

                                            Shill all you want, Howard. I love this place. The guy puts a touch of horseradish on his Reuben which makes for a fantastic sandwich!

                                            1. re: howard 1st
                                              barleywino Jan 12, 2008 12:25 PM

                                              good to know. i asked him if he could bring in some good gravlax and bagels but he said the powers that be at Pike Place mkt nixed that idea.

                                              1. re: barleywino
                                                e
                                                equinoise Jan 14, 2008 01:28 PM

                                                Perhaps I'm naive about the legal or political mechanims at work in the Market, but how could someone be prohibited from selling gravlax and bagels? Last I heard, these were not controlled substances (however addictive they might be). Please enlighten me.

                                                1. re: equinoise
                                                  barleywino Jan 14, 2008 03:17 PM

                                                  my understanding from talking with him was that there was some sort of non-compete agreement among the merchants in the Market...so if there is already somebody else there selling gravlax, they discourage other vendors from doing so...I guess the Sanitary Market is not a Free Market

                                                  1. re: barleywino
                                                    e
                                                    equinoise Jan 14, 2008 03:44 PM

                                                    Thanks for the input. Such an agreement raises alot of interesting questions, for food fanatics and others. One wonders how a competing product would be defined under the agreement, e.g. does gravlax compete with lox? smoked salmon? I have to say, it does seem the Market niches have been carefully culled to avoid duplication. I'm sitting here trying to think of other poentially competing vendors and its not easy.

                                                    P.s. like terrier I miss made to order breakfast sandwiches on the cheap. I had a pre-made egg sandwich at Mel's market one day that was pretty nasty.

                                                    1. re: barleywino
                                                      landguy Jan 16, 2008 09:34 AM

                                                      But it's ok for Delaurenti to sell Carnegie Deli corned beef and pastrami no more than 10-15 feet away from him??

                                                      1. re: landguy
                                                        barleywino Jan 16, 2008 09:58 AM

                                                        dunno...that's just what he told me...

                                                        1. re: barleywino
                                                          m
                                                          mrnelso Jan 16, 2008 10:34 AM

                                                          To get your ears blistered, casually ask vendors how they feel about the way the PDA does its business.

                                                2. re: howard 1st
                                                  terrier Jan 12, 2008 03:11 PM

                                                  Yes! This is something else I've missed from NYC - cheap breakfast sandwiches. $2.49 for egg, and cheese, $2.99 with pastrami? I'm there.

                                          2. d
                                            duck833 Jan 14, 2008 01:37 PM

                                            Has anyone on this site been to Kenny & Zuke's new deli in Portland yet?
                                            They cure, smoke and steam their own brisket on-site. I think I like their pastrami better than Katz.

                                            Was wondering how this compared. Will check it out in a few months.

                                            11 Replies
                                            1. re: duck833
                                              h
                                              hhlodesign Jan 16, 2008 10:14 AM

                                              K&Z is MUCH better! More flavor and smokiness in their meat.

                                              So...
                                              Drive to Vancouver fro Chinese Food
                                              Drive to Portland for Pastrami

                                              1. re: hhlodesign
                                                g
                                                GreenYoshi Jan 16, 2008 12:24 PM

                                                Smokiness is not something I think about when I think of pastrami...

                                                I'm looking for flavor and juicyness.

                                                Katz in NYC is probably the best example.

                                                1. re: GreenYoshi
                                                  h
                                                  hhlodesign Jan 16, 2008 01:42 PM

                                                  Smokiness should be something you think about when you think of pastrami since it is a primary factor in how it is made.

                                                  Katz's is a very good version (the fatty cut), as is Langer's in LA; K&Z is better than both of them.

                                                  1. re: hhlodesign
                                                    g
                                                    GreenYoshi Jan 16, 2008 03:24 PM

                                                    Disagree. The smoking for a pastrami is much more for the preservative factor than for the taste factor (unlike in BBQ or something). In fact, isn't most of the smoke flavor (purposely) removed once they stick those things in water?

                                                    I will try your Kenny & Zuke's, but I'm pretty sure I will still hold Katz's Deli as the exemplar pastrami.

                                                    1. re: GreenYoshi
                                                      l
                                                      Lauren Jan 17, 2008 08:06 AM

                                                      I was under the impression that they only kept corned beef in the brine. I've not seen pastrami in a brine once it's smoked.

                                                      1. re: Lauren
                                                        d
                                                        dagrassroots Jan 17, 2008 09:20 AM

                                                        I think Green Yoshi is talking about the steaming process.

                                                        1. re: dagrassroots
                                                          h
                                                          howard 1st Jan 17, 2008 09:41 AM

                                                          both corned beef (usually made from the brisket) and pastrami (usually made from the plate [or deckle]) are brined to cure and preserve them. both are then boiled (or steamed) to fully cook them . at that point, pastrami is rubbed with additional spices and smoked for both to add flavor and to encourage some melting of fat. eating lean pastrami is like kissing your aunt through a napkin....

                                                          1. re: howard 1st
                                                            extramsg Jul 21, 2008 05:20 PM

                                                            I think this is partially incorrect. I've personally never seen a recipe for pastrami, old or new, that included steaming or boiling the meat before smoking it. I'd love to see a reference if I'm wrong. I think the traditional and common manner is to cure (preferably by dry curing, but probably more commonly by brining) the meat, then smoking, then steaming until tender. The steaming process should play little part in its flavoring. It's there just to finish tenderizing the meat, melt some fat, and lubricate the sinews.

                                                            The issue, I think, arises because nearly all delis have their pastrami made for them nowadays. Even Katz's. Even Langer's. It's part of a commercial process.

                                                            Having considered this for K&Z, I know that the process usually includes chemicals (beyond curing salt) that speed up the process, resulting in a diminished cure flavor. Also, because of modern technology, the amount of smoke is much reduced since the wood or coals do not have to be used as a heat source. They are merely there to flavor the meat.

                                                            In my experience, pastrami and Montreal smoked meat have a pretty light smoke flavor in general. K&Z's pastrami has a much stronger smoke flavor than any commercial pastrami I've tasted and also a stronger cure flavor. I assume that 100 years ago, this was more common, since 100 years ago every little Jewish delicatessen would be making their own meats or having a wider variety of producers make it for them using the technology at the time: ie, true hot or cold smoking without the use of modern heat sources. I can't imagine this didn't produce a more substantial smoke flavor than is common today. But I haven't been able to find any descriptions of the flavor of pastrami from that long ago.

                                                            Personally, I don't think it's about which is "better". It seems there is room for both styles and people will like whichever they like. It's like the fat issue. Traditionally, pastrami is from a very fatty part of the cow, essentially the eye-piece of the belly, like the meatiest part of where bacon would come from on a pig. Sometimes you see rivers of fat in pastrami, sometimes it's pretty lean, even at wonderful places like Katz's. The trend is definitely towards the latter, but I've had people complain about both.

                                                            I would love to see more places making pastrami from scratch. I think it would be an easy fit for Texas BBQ joints.

                                                            PS: In case you don't know, I'm the Zuke part of Kenny & Zuke's.

                                                            1. re: extramsg
                                                              s
                                                              Simpatico Jul 21, 2008 07:42 PM

                                                              Hey Zuke! I'll be visiting PDX next month (I live in SEA) and can't wait to visit your place again. I sure hope you're not working those c-r-a-z-y hours anymore (are you?).

                                                          2. re: dagrassroots
                                                            l
                                                            Lauren Jan 18, 2008 08:00 AM

                                                            Right - but it's not put in water again after it's smoked is it?

                                                            1. re: Lauren
                                                              d
                                                              dagrassroots Jan 18, 2008 08:27 AM

                                                              It is steamed after it is smoked.

                                              2. y
                                                yoyo11 Jan 14, 2008 01:41 PM

                                                Gotta say I was a bit disappointed after all of the glowing reviews. Had the pastrami on dark rye and it was more than a touch too fatty for my tastes. I'll give it another go but has anyone else found the pastrami to be fatty?

                                                3 Replies
                                                1. re: yoyo11
                                                  barleywino Jan 14, 2008 03:20 PM

                                                  i woudl agree, the pastrami and corned beef there are fatty...that's actually why i like them ;)

                                                  1. re: barleywino
                                                    l
                                                    Lauren Jan 15, 2008 09:26 AM

                                                    Me too!

                                                  2. re: yoyo11
                                                    landguy Jan 14, 2008 04:48 PM

                                                    Ya yenta :-) Good pastrami is supposed to be fatty!

                                                  3. d
                                                    duck833 Jan 14, 2008 04:32 PM

                                                    It just depends on the brisket they are slicing at the time. They are more than willing to bring you a lean sandwich. They are going through 2,000 lbs of brisket a week, the brisket are all different, some have more fat than others. Ask and you shall receive!!!!

                                                    1. y
                                                      yoyo11 Jan 15, 2008 10:11 AM

                                                      Well, I'm glad it's not just me. I do agree that a bit of fat adds flavor but this was a bit too much. I'll definitely give them another chance but I'll ask for a leaner cut and see what happens.

                                                      1. terrier Jan 17, 2008 09:32 AM

                                                        Breakfast sandwiches didn't last long, apparently. I went yesterday around 10:30 & they didn't have them though the sign said "served until 11am." (Oh well, ended up with a tongue sandwich on dark rye, which was great!)

                                                        Went back today shortly after 9am & the sign for breakfast sandwiches was gone entirely.

                                                        I'm sad now; I really could have used a pastrami & egg this morning.

                                                        1 Reply
                                                        1. re: terrier
                                                          terrier Jan 27, 2008 03:31 PM

                                                          Breakfast sandwiches are back! And I finally had one this morning!

                                                          The pastrami, egg, and cheese sandwich is absolutely incredible. Much better, actually, than the breakfast sandwiches I regularly ate in NYC when I lived there owing to a much better quality roll and better meat. It's a total steal at $3.

                                                          (They'll make them with whatever meat you ask for, even though pastrami's the only one advertised.)

                                                        2. paris221966 Jan 20, 2008 08:59 PM

                                                          I Love New York Deli is the best!

                                                          1. b
                                                            burritobelle Mar 21, 2008 07:46 PM

                                                            Holy crap - great matzo ball soup! I have never had good MBS in a restaurant. Katz in NYC and in Canter's in LA don't put any carrots or celery in their soups - and it's always oily. But not this! Tastes just like my mom's - down to the dill floating around in the broth. AND you get two balls! Restaurants only seem to give ya one. I also splurged on a devil dog - my favorite treat when I visited my NYC relatives as a kid.

                                                            1. m
                                                              mateo21 May 5, 2008 09:43 AM

                                                              I'll have to agree with what a few people just said here -- I had the Pastrami yesterday -- looked more like bacon than brisket, way too much fat. Not only that, it did not have much flavor, I had it on rye with a little horseradish and some sprouts (my creation), and I couldn't really taste the meat.

                                                              1 Reply
                                                              1. re: mateo21
                                                                terrier May 5, 2008 11:33 AM

                                                                Their pastrami is from the deckle, not the brisket. It's supposed to be fatty.

                                                                Horseradish and sprouts isn't the way I'd go with it.

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