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Feb 13, 2009 04:55 PM

Karen and Irv's Hot Pastrami Deli in Brick?

Anyone with info on this place? I keep driving by and my parents, who are in the area, have never been. Is it worth a stop? Are there homemade pickles? Any comments?

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  1. I started going to go to irv and karens when it was in toms river. We had lunch there at least once a week for about 15 years. My favorate is the hot corned beef, russian dressing and cole slaw on teriffic crusty rye. Bowls of pickels and cole slaw on the table and just enough attitude so you know you are not in Kansas anymore. Also good soups and breakfasts.

    9 Replies
    1. re: boatboy

      Never been there, but I passed it many times... How does it compare to Wolfies Deli in Toms River Rt 37?

      1. re: Tapas52

        I eat there a while away on the advice of a friend and will never go back. As a teenager I worked in a deli in Northern NJ, so I am aware of a really good deli and mediocre deli.

        I found the matzo ball soup lacked taste It seemed to me that the chicken was just passed throught the water, the corn beef was dry and as far as the bowls of pickles and cole slaw that true deli lovers enjoy, it was a small bowl (a soup bowl size) of each.

        If you want a relly Jewish deli sandwich, please do not go there.

        Even the deli (Jessy and Dacid) in Marlboro is a better choice.

        1. re: Babs16

          babs I hear ya....I grew up eating at Katz's, Second Ave deli, Hy Tulip etc, ....there's nothing around here that even comes close here in south central NJ....except maybe Harold's deli.........oh I need a Turkey with Russian dressing now YUMMMY!

          1. re: Tapas52

            Well, Hinks over in Wall has great roast turkey. Their cole slaw is really good as well. Maybe you should check them out. I've never had a sandwich from them, just the salads and cold cuts. But a turkey with Russian dressing on marble bread does sound really tasty right now.
            I'm all about the pickles. Where can I find great half sours in a jar? I just bought some Ba-Tempte pickles a few days ago...Kosher dills, the store had no half sours. They are mushy and tasteless. Claussens are sadly far better. I want good, cold, crunchy pickles! Why are they so hard to find south of 1-195??

            1. re: mschow

              The best pickles in NYC neear the the Essex Street market, it is a covered market on the lower east side (Essex Street & Delancey} Pickle guys. It is absolutely the best. Enjoy and you can even bring back some home.


              1. re: Tapas52

                There is a pickle seller in the flea market in Wall where RTs 33 & 34 meet that has consistently good pickles. They are open Fri - Sun and sell full sour, half sour, new, garlic dill and hot pickles plus pickled tomatos. I stop there at least twice a month.

        2. re: Tapas52

          Tapas - There is no comparison between the two. Irv and Karen's is head and shoulders above Wolfies. As others have posted, the corned beef, fresh roasted turkey, soups and the all important rye bread is fabulous. TR's loss is Brick's gain (and to think that all we get in return is a Wawa gas station). Sadly, I have yet to visit the Brick location. Good Luck.

          1. re: bgut1

            My last visit to Wolfie's was poor at best regarding authentic Jewish style deli. I passed Irv & karen's after I ate at the Hickory hog not far away on Rt88 last week so I will give it a shot...

            I miss Katz's (sigh)

            1. re: Tapas52

              Well, Katz's is one of the best. For sure. The closest to the Katz's experience is probably Irving's in Livingston, though it is a bit of a hike from central NJ.
              I suppose Harold's is ok, but in central NJ my favorite deli restaurant is still Jack Cooper's in Edison. All the classics here, very well executed, and not priced through the roof. Their pastrami is as good as any I've had (and better than quite a few).