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May 8, 2008 08:50 AM

Looking for Best Sliced Tongue / Tongue Sandwich (Deli/Butcher Shop)

Hi all,

My friend asks me if I know where to get the best sliced tongue or tongue sandwich as he has a strong craving for it. He is only looking for the deli-style tongue (so not the fancy ones you can get in restaurants). I know 2nd Ave Deli and Katz have it, but which one is better? Or any other places that is even better than the two?

Also, if you know any butcher shops / grocery stores / meat markets that sell sliced tongue, that will be very helpful.

Thanks in advance!

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  1. Sarge's Deli on 3rd Ave and about 36th Street. I always ask for fatty end since this is more flavorful. And, their Pastrami (again, fatty) rivals that of Katz's. I haven't yet made it to 2nd Ave Deli though will shortly.

    5 Replies
    1. re: eve

      Hi eve,

      Thanks for your reply. I have actually never been to Sarge's deli before (shame on me). Just want to ask a few more questions:

      - Will they allow me to buy sliced tongue in lbs instead of sandwich?
      - Do they hand-slice or machine slice their meat?
      - are the meat thick slices or thin slices (or can I choose)?

      Sorry for the list of questions. Your help is much appreciated.

      1. re: kobetobiko

        Not sure about the buying by weight. Can't hurt to call first. I think it is a hand slicer. and, the slices are thin. but, again. not sure if you can specify. It is perfect for me but each their own taste. Not sure about phone number but know they have a website. Prices online are not up to date though.

        1. re: kobetobiko

          Hey, kobe,

          Sarge's ranks with Katz's as my favorite Manhattan delis.

          Though I like deli-style tongue, I haven't had it in either place. But in case your friend has still not gotten his tongue fix, here are the answers to your questions about Sarge's:

          - You can definitely buy meats by the pound.
          - Meats are machine-sliced. But I must say that does absolutely no damage to the superb pastrami I've had there.
          - I'm sure you can specify how you would like your meats sliced.

          So, kobe, have you managed to get to Sarge's yet?

          1. re: RGR

            Hi RGR,

            Thanks for the tips! I haven't had the chance to visit Sarge yet, but my friend and I did get the tongue sandwich at Katz. I thought it was ok, but not impressive enough to get me to re-order. May be their pastrimi was too good that anything else became pale next to it.

            I went to 2nd Ave Deli 2 times and thought that their sandwiches were really just uneven. The first time the brisket was really good but the second time it was just ok. However, I found that the best thing in the whole house was the free the chicken cracklings! I did like their other offerings like the matzoh ball soups.

            1. re: kobetobiko

              Hey, kobe,

              When I do buy tongue, I get it at the Mill Basin Deli, in Brooklyn. It's a kosher deli, and the tongue is excellent, as are all the deli meats there. To be honest, I never eat straight tongue sandwiches. What I like to do is take tongue slices home and make a combination sandwich with other meats (pastrami, corned beef, and salami).

              I haven't been to the 2nd Ave. Deli specifically because I've read so many reports about how uneven everything is.

      2. I saw andrew zimmerman eat a tongue sandwich on his nyc episode of his show at carnegie deli on 6th ave. it looked pretty tasty. it was sliced very thin and the sandwich itself was very thick.


          Thought you might enjoy this, and, BTW, the Tongue is delicious!

          1. I hope mentioning the Stage Deli isn't some sort of taboo, but their tongue sandwiches are as good as I've had anywhere.

            1. Do you have a slicer at home? Be aware that you can save about a billion dollars by buying a whole cured/pickled tongue at Stew Leonard in Yonkers, and slicing it yourself. You do want to slice it very thin, but you can pile it high, as noted on another post. Rye bread and mustard.