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Langer's question...

Anyone ever order the hot pastrami with cream cheese and tomatoes? It sounds really frickin good, but I wouldn't want to waste a trip if it pales compared to a regular pastrami. Would appreciate some imput. Thanks.

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  1. The pastrami at Langer’s is so amazing that I hate to put anything extra on it. Maybe I’m just boring, but I always order the plain hot pastrami sandwich on the fabulous double-baked rye bread. Just the bread, a little mustard, and the pastrami. That’s heaven! Adding extras would almost seem like putting vanilla syrup and coke into a glass of Romanee-Conti. For the same reason, I don’t put Tabasco, lemon, or mignonette on a fresh raw oyster from Washington or Canada. For Gulf oysters, who cares? But for the briny delicacy of a fresh-from-the-sea Pacific Northwest oyster, why screw it up? Especially when I’m tasting a variety of PNW oysters and trying to discern the subtle differences between them. To beat this horse completely to death, one of the best desserts I ever had, at the Chez Panisse Café in Berkeley, consisted of a single Kishu tangerine from Churchill Orchard in the Ojai Valley and three Barhi dates from the Flying Disc Ranch in the Coachella Valley. Simple, and simply amazing flavors. Less is often more.

    1. Tom Is correct, IMO, and he's not boring at all. Cream cheese and tomatoes probably would pep up a lesser sandwich, but the plain pastrami (hand cut only) needs no additions. That's why I avoid the much touted #19 which, IMO, dilutes the flavor and texture of both the meat and the bread. Don't forget to request "new" pickles.

      1 Reply
      1. re: TomSwift

        I agree. They keep pushing the sandwich with cheese. But once you taste it, you realize the pared down version is the better version.

      2. Count me among the "please don't do it" faction.

        Well, I'm exaggerating (a little bit) since you should of course order what you like, but Langer's pastrami is quite good and putting anything on it (except maybe the slightest trace of mustard) seems a shame. My work sometimes brings me to the LA area and Langer's is always on my list to visit.

        And TomSwift is right...be sure to ask for the "new" or "half sour" pickles. Their more subtle flavor is the perfect accompaniment to the sandwich.

        1. As a sucker for cream cheese, I think it sounds really amazing too. Sacreligious, but really delcious. Report back if you order one because I'm dying to know.

          1. I'm in the purists' camp on this issue...