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Dec 15, 2009 08:15 PM

I love langer's pastrami but i have trouble thinking of the restaurant as an "ultimate" RESTAURANT...

I love Langer's Pastrami. It's incredible. I take out of towners to langer's all the time. I even bought David Sax's new book "Save the deli" and skipped the intro and ny section to read his analysis of langer's first. But my question comes on the heals of the Ultimate LA restaurant poll which Langer's just won...the pastrami is amazing, of course, but why are people ranking the restaurant so high? from what i can tell, very few folks eat anything besides the pastrami. many chowhounders haven't even tried anything else on the menu. I guess in my book, an ultimate restaurant needs to have multiple food items that bring me in. I hope I'm being clear here. it's not that i dislike langer's. i love it, but i love it for the pastrami, not for anything else on the menu. So, for the people that ranked it so high...enlighten me: Did you cast your vote purely for the pastrami? are there other things you order but don't write about on this site? is it the curbside service? Thanks, in advance.

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  1. They have plenty of good food besides the immortal pastrami. Sometimes, I'll do the #19 with sliced turkey instead of pastrami. If you're really hungry, try their steak sandwich with fries. I can get two meals out of their club sandwich. Their apple pie and poppyseed strudel are wonderful too.

    1. At the very least, Pizzeria Mozza, Umami Burger, Father’s Office, Mastro's and Phillippe's are on the list for essentially one thing. And arguably some of the others, too. Not sure it's an issue, therefore.

      2 Replies
      1. re: la tache burger

        Umami, Father's office and Phillippe's are known for making ONE thing, rest of the menu are sides.
        Langer's has a HUGE menu, sure their pastrami is great, but i would never consider it Ultimate because i've never had anything else off their menu.
        It's like saying my husband is an amazing chef because he makes the perfect slice of toast. He isn't, he just makes great toast.

        1. re: GenevieveCa

          Actually, I like the beers at FO more than I am a fan of the burger. Granted, it is a fantastic burger, but I enjoy sampling their beers with suggestions from the bartenders much more. The other food they serve is actually pretty great too.

      2. It's ok to be a one trick pony, if that trick happens to be amazing.

        Proving the converse: Jerry's Deli, where nothing is decent, no matter how many things I've tried.

        2 Replies
        1. re: Professor Salt

          Agreed, Langer's is a one trick pony, but this is the Clydesdale of pastrami. IMO the rest of Langer's menu is sound and serviceable and the other items which I've tasted (but never ordered myself) are fine but I wouldn't go out of my way to 7th & Alvarado for them. I ranked Langer's highly because of the pastrami sandwich and because the rest of the menu isn't offensive.

          1. re: Professor Salt

            The Saturn V was a one-trick pony, but it's certainly an Ultimate Rocket.

          2. I did not vote, but I'm with you on this. For a restaurant to be "The Best", everything on one's plate should always be top-notch, and I frankly can do without Langer's potato salad (for instance). I think we are confusing "Best" with "Favorite" here; Pann's is just about my FAVORITE restaurant, but it's far from the BEST restaurant I've been to.

            1 Reply
            1. re: Will Owen

              Agreed, that's a very important distinction here: "best" (semi-objective) vs. "favorite" (completely subjective). But we have no objective criteria, plus the charm of the board is that it isn't pro critics, but everyday people sharing our impressions. So it's necessarily favorite not best. Taste is by definition subjective, so there's never going to be a "right" answer.

              It turns out that a bunch of people think that under $25, Langer's is the ultimate place to go eat. You and I disagree. But trying to pick their choice apart through argument won't change their opinion. I'd say Hide or Sea Harbour, but lots of people would disagree with me there. All it means is that we're not in tune with the average LA chowhound on this one.

            2. keep in mind that Langers is #1 overall due to the most votes....but this is due to the fact there were 2 categories (under and over $25). i am most positive that if there were not price category that Langers would be lucky to crack the top 15. but the fact we had an under $25 category, i can see why langers was tops on almost everyones list. what other under $25 place in LA gets as much recognition as Langers? being #1 on our list just says Langers is the most popular....and on chowhound thats a pretty big honor since "we" are foodies!